FTSE 100-listed tobacco giant Imperial Tobacco saw its shares jump 2.34 per cent yesterday after its interim management statement said it expected modest profit growth this year due to improving European trading.
The Bristol-based maker of Rizla and Gauloises also said it was on track to complete the acquisition of a number of US cigarette brands from Reynolds and Lorillard for £4.3bn, which would make it the third-biggest US cigarette company.
Imperial’s revenue fell one per cent in the nine months ending 30 June to £4.8bn, while total tobacco volume fell eight per cent. Volumes of its growth brands, which include JPS, Davidoff and Gauloises, rose three per cent with significant growth in Europe.
“Although we have seen a modest deceleration in the rate of market decline in parts of Europe, this has been offset by a significant deterioration in the Russian market and the impact of the turbulent situation in the Middle East,” said Imperial.
Shares closed up at 2,585p in London.