Iconic Pepsi Sign Ordered Removed in Venezuela
May 27, 2010
The Associated Press reports that a giant globe-shaped Pepsi sign that has been a fixture of the Caracas skyline for years has been ordered removed by city officials allied with President Hugo Chavez. Pepsi''s distributor in the country, Pepsi-Cola Venezuela, said in a statement Wednesday that it has all the necessary permits for the red, white and blue sign, which is one of the most recognizable in the city. Pepsi has traditionally been the top-selling soft drink in Venezuela. But the office of district Mayor Jorge Rodriguez said it hasn''t had proper permits since 2003 and fined the local Pepsi distributor about $1.6 million in local currency, according to the state-run Bolivarian News Agency. The office has also cited a list of objections to the sign including insurance, maintenance and even a claim that it poses a safety risks in the event of an earthquake. The Pepsi globe stands atop a 26-story building belonging to the distributor''s corporate parent, Empresas Polar, the country''s largest food producer that has recently come under strong criticism from Chavez.