DISTRIBUTORS DEMAND SH5. 4 BILLION FROM HEINEKEN

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The three distributors lawyer Philip Nyachoti leaving Milimani law court’s (FILE PHOTO).

BY SAM ALFAN.

Three beer distributors are demanding Sh5.3 compensation from Heineken.

They have also applied for the striking out of three statements lodged by Heineken.

Their contracts were cancelled and as such moved to court asking for ramification.

Kenya’s Maxam Ltd, Uganda’s Modern Lane Ltd and Tanxania’s Olepasu Ltd claim that the Dutch multi-national with two of its local affiliates have flouted the law by filing separate statements.

The three distributors, through lawyer Philip Nyachoti, have petitioned the Commercial court to stop any further deliberations in the dispute until the alleged offending statements-which they claim are vague denials- are expunged from the record.

They are seeking special damages amounting to Sh5.4 billion.

When the matter came before Justice Francis Tuiyot, lawyers acting for Heineken International, Heineken Brouwerijen and Heineken East African Import Company (HEAIC) applied for 14 days to file a replying affidavit. The matter will be heard by Justice Grace Nzioka on August 30.

Heineken, has justified its decision to cancel the distributorship contracts with the three firms operating across East Africa on grounds that it intends to attract more suppliers to expand its business.

The beer manufacturer claims the three distributors are not entitled to any explanation since the contracts were unequivocal that each of the contracted distributors could be compensated with €450,000 (Sh51 million) once the business relationship was severed.

The distributors have accused the beer maker and its affiliates of unilaterally cancelling the deals on flimsy, selfish and malicious grounds.

They claim that the move is meant to frustrate them, deny them income and allow new-comers to infiltrate the business at lesser financial terms.

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