PepsiCo has become Russia's largest food and drink company at a single stroke after buying a majority stake in dairy and juice producer Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods.

The $3.8bn deal hands PepsiCo more than 50% of the Russian juice market.

The move comes as part of a major drive by the soft drinks and snacks group to develop its presence in emerging markets. PepsiCo also plans to triple sales of nutritional and functional foods by 2020 to $30bn.

"Dairy has a huge, untapped potential to bridge snacks and beverages," said PepsiCo chief executive Indra Nooyi.

PepsiCo could also emerge as a potential bidder for French yoghurt business Yoplait, which last month was the subject of a billion-euro takeover bid by French rival Lactalis.

Read more
Lactalis bids to keep Yoplait in French hands (18 November 2010)
Britvic and PepsiCo link to ‘Reward Your Thirst’ (23 October 2010)