There will be some sort of announcement regarding the sale of Imperial Brands, plc cigar assets before the end of the year.
The company told the Financial Times that the sale of its cigar business has “attracted ‘significant interest'” and that an announcement would be made in the next 12 weeks.
Imperial put its premium cigar divisions up for sale earlier this year as part of an effort to generate £2 billion ($2.5 billion). Those assets include:
- Altadis U.S.A. — The company behind Montecristo, Romeo y Julieta and others in the U.S.
- Casa de Montecristo — A chain of high end retail stores, some owned by Imperial and others owned by franchise operators.
- 50 percent stake in Habanos S.A. — A joint-venture with the Cuban tobacco monopoly in the company that controls the sales and marketing of Cuban cigars worldwide.
- JR Cigar — The second largest cigar retailer in the world.
- Tabacalera de García — The world’s largest cigar factory. The TDG campus alsso includes a machine-made cigar operation that is likely not for sale.
Analysts at Jefferies estimated at the time that Imperial could generate $1.3-2 billion from the sale of the premium business. They also estimate that the premium cigar business generates $450 million in revenue and earns $111 million in profit annually.
Last month Imperial said that the sale was on track for its self-imposed May 2020 deadline.
The Financial Times also reported on discontent from some of the company’s larger shareholders regarding Imperial’s management.