Nooyi, Kochhar among most powerful biz women: Fortune

Nooyi, chairman and CEO of beverages major Pepsico, has topped the list of 50 Most Powerful Women in US for the fifth time. In the latest ranking, Nooyi is followed by Kraft Foods' chief Irene Rosenfeld at the second spot and Archer Daniels Midland's boss Patricia Woertz at the third place.

Others in the top ten include WellPoint's Angela Braly (4th), Avon Products' Andrea Jung (5th), media personality Oprah Winfrey (6th rank), Xerox chief Ursula Burns (9) and Yahoo!'s head Carol Bartz (10).

"It was a year of expansion for this elite group. Several women, including PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi, pulled off big acquisitions, while thirteen others earned big promotions," Fortune said.

In another list of 50 most powerful women worldwide, excluding the US, there are four Indians -- ICICI Bank Managing director and CEO Chanda Kochhar (10th rank), HP India's Neelam Dhawan (36), HT Media's Shobhana Bhartia (44) and Apollo Hospital Group's Preetha Reddy (48).

About 49-year-old Kochhar, the magazine said that she took charge of India's largest private sector bank last year and swiftly put her own stamp on the business.

"Twenty-five years after starting out at ICICI as a management trainee, Kochhar shattered the glass ceiling in 2009, making history as the first woman managing director and CEO at a private sector bank in India," Fortune noted.

According to Fortune, with managing assets of more than USD 100 billion and wholly-owned subsidiaries in 18 countries, Kochhar has strengthened its sources of funding and pushed through an ambitious branch expansion.

Meanwhile, writing about Nooyi, the report pointed out that she completed the purchase of PepsiCo's two largest bottlers, bringing revenues to a projected USD 60 billion.

"Now she'll have to deliver the $400 million annual cost savings she promised. Investors seem assured: The stock is up 12 per cent since September 2009," it added.

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