Altria Eyes e-Cigarette Maker NJOY & Plans To Divest Juul Stake: Report

  • Altria Group Inc MO is reportedly in talks to buy e-cigarette startup NJOY Holdings Inc, along with plans to divest its stake in Juul Labs Inc.
  • The Marlboro maker is expected to acquire NJOY for about $2.75 billion, the WSJ reported.
  • The deal for NJOY, expected to be announced as soon as this week will also include a $500 million earnout.
  • NJOY is among a few e-cigarette makers whose products have got clearance from the federal regulators.
  • Altria acquired a 35% stake in Juul Labs Inc for $12.8 billion in 2018. The company has been wanting to develop or acquire e-cigarettes following a drop in traditional cigarettes use in the U.S.
  • Juul has faced lawsuits on allegations that it had targeted minors and also locked up in a dispute with federal regulators.
  • Juul, representing 27% of e-cigarettes sold in U.S. stores tracked by Nielsen, was on the verge of bankruptcy in 2022.
  • Altria now values Juul at $714 million versus the $38 billion valuation when it first invested, the report adds. 
  • The Federal Trade Commission is expected to issue a decision in March on whether to unwind Altria’s investment in Juul. 
  • Price Action: MO shares are trading higher by 0.28% at $46.67 in premarket on the last check Tuesday.
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