February 03, 2021  

3 reasons AI impacts the future of every business

Athina Kanioura, PepsiCo’s EVP and Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer, joins the newly launched Microsoft AI Business School podcast to share her insights. 

The future of a company depends on rapidly advancing its data and analytics strategies, says Athina Kanioura, EVP and Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer for PepsiCo. That process is unquestionably intertwined with implementing artificial intelligence (AI).

“Any company needs to have a plan on how data and AI will be at the heart of every decision process,” Athina says. Businesses should look at ways to exponentially speed up the implementation of AI, and “all investments are directly tied to this outcome,” she explains.

As a leader in the field, Athina appeared on the Microsoft AI Business School Podcast to discuss how crucial integrating AI is to a business. Here are three reasons she says companies need to move quickly when looking at how to integrate AI technology into their space.


“AI in customer service has become a top priority,” Athina says. The results are obvious in certain industries. For example, she says, some airlines are facilitating better travel experiences with machine learning to improve logistics, scheduling and customer service. And some retail outlets in Japan are using holograms to interact with consumers to provide personalized service — an application with potential to make its way to grocery stores.


“We believe AI is a corporate imperative, so when you design a data- and AI-driven organization, you have to think of the implications across the enterprise,” Athina says. That means if AI is applied in the supply chain, it also impacts commercial divisions. If it’s used in HR, then it’s also relevant to associates in the field. As Athina explains, the integration of AI doesn’t happen in a silo — so all areas of business need to be considered in order for them to derive the most benefit from the transformation process.


Speeding up the implementation and scaling of AI gives any company the opportunity to rethink and evolve its strategy, says Athina, and the results can be game-changing. “There will be new business models that will be created,” she says. “One of the new success metrics will be creating a set of new digital products and services that go beyond their existing domains.”

Listen to the full Microsoft AI Business School podcast for more of Athina’s insights on the future of AI.