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Uganda’s beer industry is said to be in a tremble, with nearly all players facing tough times- Parambot breweries is under receivership, Uganda Breweries Limited (UBL) is undergoing reorganization while market leaders Nile Breweries Limited (NBL) have been hit by a wave of fraud and complacent that has seen the company’s sales, revenue decline. The company’s new products are also said to be facing tough competition from rivals.

Sources say, management at Nile breweries has been wondering why their sales have been struggling despite the heavy investment. Reports from the investigations revealed that greedy employees have been misusing promotion materials turning them into cash and sharing among themselves. The Promotion samples are met to drive sales by recruiting new drinkers, converting customers taking rival products to NBL products as well as rewarding NBL loyal drinkers.

In the ongoing investigations, a couple of NBL employees have been suspended indefinitely while dozens including managers are under investigations. The affected employees include sales representatives for the Central Business District, Kansanga and Area Manager for Northern Uganda among others.

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Area managers for Entebbe, Kalangala and central business district, according to sources at NBL are also under investigation. The suspended employees however, say it is the managers who ‘authorized’ them to convert the promotion materials into cash and pass on the money, something the former are denying.

In email to Newz Post, Onapito-Ekomoloit, NBL Corporate Affairs Director, acknowledged fraud and suspension at NBL:

‘‘Nile Breweries Limited has zero tolerance for corruption and fraud accordingly, certain fraud-related dismissals have taken place but claims of dozens are grossly exaggerated. ‘’ he said.

Mr. Onapito explained that fraud is not widespread in our business, but when evidence of fraudulent activity is identified it will always be investigated to the full.

He adds: NBL will apply appropriate sanctions, which may include dismissal and criminal charges to all those found guilty.

These fraudulent practices which have been going on for some time have indeed affected company’s revenue as reflected the in company’s latest financial reports.

Also affected are company’s new products particularly -Nile Gold and Castle Lite. These products are said to be struggling.

These fraud cases which have been going on for a while have seriously affected company’s revenues as reflected in the latest NBL’s financial results.

However Mr. Onapito downplayed this claim: ‘‘we have robust systems and practices in place, and isolated instances of disciplinary actions do not impact on our ability to do business as usual.’’

Elsewhere some employees have voluntarily moved on while others have been given new roles. The former regional manager for Northern and Eastern region has moved to Kenya and he is expected to champion NBL entry in Kenya after collapse of their agreement with partners in Tanzania.

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