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The Board of Intabex Services Limited made a significant decision some years back to concentrate its efforts on expansion in the developing world of tobacco. This involved some rather large investments in factories, machinery, and personnel at a time when the dealer business was very competitive. In fact, return on investment between 1980 and 1990 has been so poor that many well-established dealers are no longer in business, or have sold out.
During the last 10 years, Intabex has not only expanded its operations in the larger producing countries, but at the same time has pioneered production and processed tobaccos for export from countries which were of little interest to others because volumes were too small. Intabex approached these sources of supply with a long-term strategy and thought that with perseverance, commitment, and dedication, the light at the end of the tunnel would be reached.
In all the company's operations, the developing world support of the authorities in the countries concerned has been cultivated. These governments appreciate the local employment created and the hard currency exports earned by Intabex operations--both of which are much needed for their economies.
It has taken quite a few years to produce enough tobacco in these new development areas to make operations viable. This development has been expensive and sometimes tortuous, but the company figured that long-term survival would be based on constructing …