top of page
  • Writer's picturerutendo matinyarare


Simon's company, Gold Leaf Tobacco, has become the biggest cigarette producer and supplier in South Africa and the entire SADC region, overtaking BAT.

When BAT attempted to stop Simon from accessing tobacco, he simply backward integrated and invested in contract farming tobacco with small-scale farmers in Zimbabwe. This investment has resulted in Zimbabwean black farmers breaking all tobacco production records in history.

Today, Simon manufactures cigarettes in seven SADC countries, creating jobs for locals and making tobacco farmers millionaires. He is also engaging in sanctions-busting activities in Zimbabwe and Congo by investing in manufacturing and farming in these countries.

Simon has recently invested $140 million in a new factory that will manufacture, package and distribute cigarettes in Zimbabwe using the latest technology.

On the other hand, BAT simply imports cigarettes manufactured in South Africa and Kenya and takes all of its proceeds out of Africa to benefit its British, American and western shareholders, to maintain a colonial-style relationship with Africa.

Simon is earning the wrath of BAT and the Americans because he broke BAT monopoly and is breaking the white code by funding African farmers, manufacturing in Africa and reinvesting his profits in countries like Zimbabwe and Congo.

Moreover, Simon, who sees himself as an African, is also the biggest investor in Africa's sugar value-chain and all of this goes against Western interests, which want to see Africa fail.