British American Tobacco takes on three Reynolds directors as $49bn mega-acquisition nears completion

 
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The deal will create the world's biggest listed tobacco company (Source: Getty)

British American Tobacco (BAT) has appointed three new non-executive directors as it prepares to close its acquisition of tobacco rival Reynolds.

The new additions from Reynolds were agreed under the terms of the $49.4bn deal, which is expected to create the world’s largest listed tobacco company.

BAT, the third-largest FTSE 100 company by market capitalisation, first offered to buy the remainder of Reynolds, owner of the Camel brand, in October last year, before sealing the deal in January in one of the biggest ever outbound British M&A transactions.

Shareholders this week rubber-stamped the deal, which should be formally completed by Tuesday.

Read more: British American Tobacco gets shareholder backing for $49bn Reynolds deal

Lionel Nowell, Holly Keller Koeppel and Luc Jobin will join the board once BAT, which produces cigarette brands Dunhill, Lucky Strike and Benson & Hedges, has completed the purchase of the remaining 57.8 per cent of Reynolds’ shares. BAT had been a shareholder in Reynolds since 2004 before making the move.

Former PepsiCo executive Nowell served as lead independent director of Reynolds from January this year, after a decade on the board.

Koeppel is an experienced infrastructure investor, who previously worked at Citigroup and currently serves as senior adviser to investors Corsair Capital, while Jobin is chief executive of the Canadian National Railway Company.

BAT chairman Richard Burrows said: "Following closing, the Reynolds business will immediately become a key part of the BAT Group.

“Each of these new directors brings to the board complementary skills and valuable experience of the US business environment and, in particular, the US tobacco sector.”

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