TO KILL EXPANDS INTO
LUCRATIVE NIGERIAN MARKET
February 20, 2004, Licensed to Kill, Inc
held a well-attended press conference at the International Press
Centre in Lagos, Nigeria to introduce Nigerian media to the
newest multinational tobacco corporation to enter the Nigerian
to Kill's Senior VP for Corporate Communications, Corrie "Core"
Prutspin began by giving the journalists a brief history of the
company and distributing copies of the company's articles of incorporation
(which explicitly state the company's purpose: "to manufacture
and market tobacco products in a way that each year kills more
than 400,000 Americans and 4.5 million other persons worldwide").
then informed the journalists that it was a real honor to have
Rich Fromdeth, the CEO and Chairman of the company himself, present
at the press conference. Soon after, Fromdeth rose to unveil the
company's slogan "We're
Rich, You're Dead!" to the gasps of many reporters.
Senior VP went on to address the reason for the company's visit
to Nigeria. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, with
well over 100 million people -- over half of which are under the
age of 15. This large, very young, and rapidly growing population
spells J-A-C-K-P-O-T for a company like Licensed to Kill!
facilitate its expansion into the very lucrative Nigerian market,
Licensed to Kill has chosen to open up a Nigeria branch office
in Lagos. The corporations's chief competitor in the country is
British American Tobacco (BAT), which claims to be "Proudly
Nigerian" (according to the company's public relations campaign
which seeks to portray BAT as firmly rooted in Nigerian society).
BAT, Licensed to Kill does not claim to be "Nigerian."
It is, however, quite proud of its profitable business. Licensed
to Kill took the opportunity of press conference to announce the
launching of its own Nigerian public relations campaign, "Proudly
Killing Nigerians," which the company feels more accurately
describes what its business is all about. View
Senior VP informed assembled journalists that Licensed to Kill
is seeking tax breaks from the Nigerian government to build a
new factory outside Lagos -- just as BAT received for building
a factory in Ibadan. "Our products may eventually kill 100,000's
of Nigerians," said Prutspin, "but isn't this is a small
price to pay for the creation of 1,000 new jobs?"
then mentioned a new report by the British Medical Association
on "Smoking and Reproductive Life" and noted that smokers
are 50% more likely to suffer from impotence than nonsmokers.
"In the UK alone," she said, "it is estimated that
120,000 men aged 30-50 years are impotent because of smoking."
The CEO and Senior VP then unveiled Licensed to Kill's newest
cigarette brand, weak organ,
designed specifically for Nigerian males. Read
to Kill hopes that its weak organ
brand will help its male customers come to terms with their smoking-caused
erectile dysfunction. "We want our customers to know that
we care about them...and least their money," said Prutspin,"In
the end, the only size that really matters is that of our customers'
wallets!" View photos: 1,
CEO Rich Fromdeth then came to the podium to speak of Licensed
to Kill's disgust with anti-tobacco activists who buzz around
annoyingly like mosquitos and to detail the company's strategy
of thwarting tobacco control legislation: keep the media away
from the health issue! (an
effective strategy that has long been employed by the tobacco
industry in Nigeria) View photo of Rich Fromdeth: 1,
Licensed to Kill's new Nigerian Director, Gray Vastone, was
introduced. Among other things, he mentioned the company's two-pronged
approach to boosting profits in Nigeria: 1) sell lots of cigarettes.
2) expoit tobacco farmers (the less they get paid, the more money
the company saves)
and U.S. Licensed to Kill Execs: Solidarity across borders in
FROM NIGERIAN JOURNALISTS
the Licensed to Kill executives finished speaking, a number of
Nigerian journalists rose to ask questions. Here are a few of
the questions posed:
Do you have a factory that actually manufactures cigarettes?
2) Your company is unique. How successful is it? What is the level
3) If your company knows that tobacco kills, what is the moral
value behind your business?
4) Do you really have such a brand? And does your company have
Senior VP responded by saying that tobacco is a legal product
and that it is the company's right, in a global free market economy,
to sell death if it wants to. The company is simply not doing
addition to significant television and radio coverage, the press
conference sparked numerous newspaper and magazine articles.
Unfortunately, the journalists apparently left with the impression
our executives were tobacco control advocates in disguise. It
to show you how difficult it is for some people to believe that
could be a tobacco company that actually tells the truth!
A company, licensed to kill (March 8, 2004) - page
Insider: Smoking to Kill (March 8, 2004) - page
Cigarettes as Licensed Killer (March 3, 2004)
Age Online: A novel way to fight tobacco
Day Online: 'Tobacco Kills over 4.8m Annually'
photos from Licensed to Kill's trip to West Africa, including
additional photos from the press conference
to Kill has also had a 7-minute video produced, featuring the
main highlights of the press conference. For information on ordering,
contact Licensed to Kill at: firstname.lastname@example.org