Cigarette giant Philip Morris International has a backup plan if its proposed acquisition of Swedish Match falls through. Expanding into the U.S. market on its own would still be a challenge, though, which could give activist investor Elliott Management Corp. an opening.
Philip Morris International Inc. has raised its offer for Swedish Match AB by 9.4% and has agreed to pay $2.7 billion to regain the U.S. rights for its IQOS heated tobacco products from Altria Group Inc.
Philip Morris International Inc. has increased its plans to enter the US, by offering a sweeter deal for Swedish Match AB, as well as buying the rights to sell IQOS heated tobacco products in the world’s biggest market for smoking alternatives.
Altria Group Inc. has decided to compete with Juul Labs Inc., distancing itself from a vaping upstart in which it invested nearly $13 billion. Juul now faces a potential ban of its e-cigarettes in the U.S., which Altria may use as an opportunity to gain market share.