PepsiCo completes acquisition of Israel’s SodaStream
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PepsiCo completes acquisition of Israel’s SodaStream

The US food and drinks giant announced in August that it was buying the Israeli firm, which makes machines that carbonate home tap water, for $3.2 billion

Newly elected CEO of PepsiCo, Ramon Laguarta (right), and SodaStream's Daniel Birnbaum at the signing of the acquisition deal, August 20, 2018, at SodaStream's offices in Israel (Lens Productions)
Newly elected CEO of PepsiCo, Ramon Laguarta (right), and SodaStream's Daniel Birnbaum at the signing of the acquisition deal, August 20, 2018, at SodaStream's offices in Israel (Lens Productions)

PepsiCo said Wednesday it has completed the acquisition of Israeli firm SodaStream, whose command of the fizzy water market appealed to the US beverage giant as demand falls for sugar-laden soft drinks.

PepsiCo said in August that it was buying the Israeli company, which makes machines that carbonate home tap water, for $3.2 billion.

“With its customisable options, SodaStream empowers consumers to personalise their preferred beverage in an environmentally friendly way and provides PepsiCo with a significant presence in the at-home marketplace,” PepsiCo CEO Ramon Laguarta said in a statement.

“Together with SodaStream, I’m confident we can accelerate progress on our shared goal of curbing plastic waste and building a more sustainable future.”

The completion of the acquisition means that SodaStream will be delisted from the exchanges its shares are listed on — the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq. Trading of SodaStream shares were halted in Tel Aviv with the announcement, and as of the end of the day its shares will be officially removed from the TA-35 and TA-125 indices, the Tel Aviv bourse said.

Scarlett Johansson with Sodastream’s Daniel Birnbaum (photo credit: Mike Coppola/Getty Images for SodaStream/via JTA)

SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum said his company “was founded to bring healthy, convenient and environmentally friendly beverage options to consumers around the world — and PepsiCo will help us deliver and expand on this mission.”

PepsiCo and arch-rival Coca-Cola have been diversifying away from their mainstay sodas in part to counter the onset of anti-obesity sugar taxes around the world.

The acquisition was also seen as a pitch to consumers concerned about mounting waste from soda cans and plastics in landfills around the world, since SodaStream employs reusable bottles.

PepsiCo has committed to keeping SodaStream’s Israeli headquarters for 15 years.

The deal will allow the Israeli firm to have “access to resources we may not have had until today,” the company’s CEO Daniel Birnbaum said in an interview in August. But it will also ensure the company keeps its young heart, he pledged.

Birnbaum also sees himself as a force for change in the Israeli society by employing diverse populations in SodaStream’s manufacturing efforts, including Jews, Arab, Bedouins and Palestinians.

SodaStream became a target of the pro-Palestinian campaign over the location of its factory in the West Bank, before moving to a location inside the Green Line several years ago.

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