Air raids destroy Transmed in Lebanon

Transmed and Fine are among FMCG companies that have been damaged during the conflict in Lebanon.

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By  Roger Field Published  August 2, 2006

The head office and warehouse of Transmed, one of Lebanon’s biggest FMCG distributors, has been destroyed during recent air raids by Israel, a spokesman for the company confirmed to Retail News Middle East. Transmed, which also has operations in Syria, Jordan and the UAE, distributes products for some of the world’s biggest FMCG suppliers, including Procter & Gamble, Nestle and Coca Cola. But the destruction of Transmed’s Lebanon site is not only causing shortages of numerous products in its domestic market. Operations at the company’s Jordan plant are also being hampered owing to a lack of supplies from Lebanese FMCG producers. Most of the Jordan plant’s products are branded food and drink goods, and supplies of many of the brands, including Panpa, one of the leading juice drinks in the Levant, and Laziza beer, are already running out. “We’re a regional company and as far as Jordan is concerned we do get a lot of our products from Lebanese suppliers,” the spokesman said. “Up until now, about two weeks since the start of the war in Lebanon, we have received no supplies whatsoever. “Because of the way we operate we have enough stock for two or three weeks, so until recently we have been okay, but now stock shortages are rife.” He added that about 40% of the company’s business usually comes from Lebanon and losses at the Jordan firm could amount to more than US $700,000 a month. The distributor’s situation is made more severe by exclusive distribution contracts it has with many manufacturers, making it difficult to source alternative goods from other producers. But Transmed is likely to be one of many FMCG companies in Lebanon to have suffered serious damage in the crisis. As Retail News Middle East went to press, a spokesman for Fine, a leading producer of hygienic paper, confirmed that the company’s plant in Beirut had also been ruined after being hit during air strikes. Fine’s Beirut factory, raw materials, and all of its trucks were hit in the raid, which is expected to cost the company up to US $9 million.

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