INDIA – Varun Beverage, the second largest bottling company of PepsiCo’s beverages in the world outside the USA, will soon set up a Rs 1,000 crore(US$0.25m) plant in Saraswati Hi-Tech City, Naini, in Prayagraj, said Nand Gopal Gupta, Uttar Pradesh Minister for industrial development.

This investment, according to Pradesh, was a part of the state government’s efforts to revive and develop the Naini Industrial Area of Prayagraj.

Nani will be the host of Saraswati Hi-Tech City is being developed as an Industrial Model Township to have non-polluting industrial, residential, and commercial sectors by the Uttar Pradesh State Industrial Development Authority (UPSIDA).

The minister added that PepsiCo’s Indian bottler will soon be given the allotment letter – a crucial document in the real estate sector during the purchase of property in India- so that it can start the work of setting up the plant after performing the groundbreaking ceremony.

As per UPSIDA officials, within a week the process of allotment of land to Varun Beverages in Saraswati Hi-tech City will be completed.

Uttar Pradesh stated: “For this, the company will invest Rs 1,000 crore(US$0.25m) and directly provide employment to around 3,000 people. Saraswati Hi-Tech City is being developed as an Industrial Model Township in Naini with separate industrial, residential, and commercial sectors by the UPSIDA.

It has been envisaged as a non-polluting industrial, residential commercial, institutional and sports sector.”

The investment in a new factory is said to expand the production capacity of the company which markets its products in 27 states and 7 Union Territories of India as well as distributing its products in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Morocco, Mozambique, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Apart from carbonated soft drinks of PepsiCo such as Pepsi, 7 Up, Mountain Dew, and Mirinda, the company distributes Tropicana fruit juice brands, Gatorade sports-themed beverages, Quaker Oats’ milk-based drinks, and Aquafina brand of bottled water.

This is the second investment in Utter Pradesh that follows an application for setting up a plant in the Bargarh area of Mau tehsil in Chitrakoot district with an investment of Rs 496.57 crore.

Taking quick action on this, the Prayagraj regional office of UPSIDA allotted 68.73-acre land to Varun Beverages for the establishment of PepsiCo’s plant in Bargarh in Chitrakoot, with plans of employing more than 1200 people, officials said.

During an organized ground-breaking ceremony-3 on June 3 in which the country’s leading entrepreneurs participated and foundation stones for an investment of Rs 80,224 crore were laid, Varun Beverages committed to invest Rs 2,000 crore(US$0.5m) in Uttar Pradesh.

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