Zimbabwe’s Tobacco Industry Marketing Board (TIMB) canceled Leanrise Tobacco’s buying license after finding the company guilty of side marketing, reports Zimeye.
According to the TIMB, Leanrise illegally leased its license to Munyasha Tobacco.
Leanrise denied the accusations and accused the regulator of misinterpreting the law. “We are not side marketing and there is nothing to substantiate any allegation of such nature,” the company said.
Leanrise argued it is entitled to have agents to advance its business. “Any tobacco purchased by the use of the Leanrise license is tobacco purchased for Leanrise,” the company noted. “In any event, the Leanrise license cannot be used to purchase tobacco from growers who are not contracted with Leanrise.”
The TIMB was unpersuaded by Leanrise’s defense, however. “After considering the contents therein, your justification for leasing your license to Munyasha Agro Pvt. Ltd. and all circumstances surrounding the matter, the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board has decided to cancel your license in terms of the Tobacco Industry and Marketing (Prohibition of side marketing) Regulations, 2022 SI 77 of 2022,” the TIMB wrote.