Japan Tobacco has announced that it is to buy $5 billion of cigarette assets from rival tobacco firm Reynolds American to acquire the Natural American Spirit business outside the US.
The company said that the deal included the trademarks and all outstanding shares of Reynolds American’s subsidiaries outside the US which sell the brand.
Japan Tobacco added that the Natural American Spirit brand had “provided a unique product offering and established a special brand positioning as the only truly global “additive free”, premium cigarette with a marketing theme that is environmentally conscious and socially progressive”, noting further that it had enjoyed “strong growth momentum” in countries including the US, Japan, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, and the UK.
“Natural American Spirit, which has a strong and international presence in a premium priced category, will allow the JT Group to further extend its brand portfolio”, said Mitsuomi Koizumi, president and CEO of the Japan Tobacco Group. “This strong and unique brand equity combined with an energetic and experienced team of people will further strengthen our Group’s business foundation”.
The deal is expected to be completed by early 2016.
Source: Japan Tobacco / Japan Times