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Philip Morris Acquires 22.6% Stake In Vectura

Phillip Morris International (PM) said on Wednesday that it has bought 22.61% of Vectura in a market purchase at $2.27 per share as promised in previous communications. The acquisition of Vectura, a company that, makes drugs for Asthma by a company that makes cigarettes was a bone of much contention for the last couple of weeks.

The acquisition, an integral part of PMI's Beyond Nicotine program, was at stake earlier this month when The Carlyle Group became favorites to acquire Vectura for $1.3 billion in an auction spanning from August 11 to August 17. But the company announced on August 10 that it will not participate in the auction as it denied paying more than the offered price, placing Vectura in a serious dilemma.

In the following days, PMI consolidated their interest and announced on Monday that they will be entering a tender period with the investors after the board unanimously recommended the 'Marlboro Man' as the right suitors. The company offered to pay $1.4 billion for the company.

Talking about the deal, the CEO of PMI Jacek Olczak said, "PMI's acquisition of Vectura is part of our long-term strategy to transform PMI by investing in scientific excellence and leveraging its capabilities and expertise. Our investment will accelerate the development and delivery of inhaled therapeutics to address many of today's unmet medical needs. We look forward to working with Vectura's great people as we embark on the next stage of our transformation."

While the reputation of PMI as a tobacco company has made many of the health charities denounce the merger, CEO Olczak made it clear that the company wants to stop selling cigarettes by 2030. However, the mist of distrust will remain as the tobacco giant is famous for defending its role in the "tobacco pandemic" and repeatedly promising to stop selling cigarettes while continuing to depend on it as the company's main source of revenue.

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