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British American Tobacco sells businesses in Russia, Belarus

by Dinara Khalilova September 7, 2023 4:32 PM 2 min read
An employee selects a packet of cigarettes at a tobacco counter inside an Essen hypermarket operated by ZAO Essen Production AG, in Naberezhnye Chelny, Russia, on Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016. (Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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British American Tobacco (BAT), one of the world's leading tobacco companies, said it would sell its Russian and Belarusian businesses to a consortium led by its Russian management team.

Following the transaction's completion next month, the consortium will own both businesses under the new name of the ITMS Group, according to the company's Sept. 7 statement.

"Upon completion, BAT will no longer have a presence in Russia or Belarus and will receive no financial gain from ongoing sales in these markets," reads the statement.

Borys Kowalsky: How Western ‘doublethink’ may result in Ukraine’s defeat
Let’s not pull punches. Russia could end up winning the war. But, contrary to the repeated assertions of people like U.S. Colonel (ret.) Douglas Macgregor, a Russian victory isn’t inevitable. The truth is that if Russia does eventually win, the West, with its leaders’ “doublethink,” will be

British American Tobacco announced its plans to sell the Russian business in March 2022, shortly after Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine. As of late June 2023, Russia and Belarus accounted for around 2.7% of BAT's revenue, according to the company's press service.

The multinational cigarette producer with headquarters in London employs over 50,000 people in almost 200 countries. BAT's brands include Kent, Lucky Strike, Rothmans, Vuse, glo, and Velo.

On Aug. 25, Ukraine's National Corruption Prevention Agency added another two major tobacco companies — Japan Tobacco International and Philip Morris International — to the list of war sponsors.

According to the agency's website, the companies continue to do business in Russia and support its economy amid the all-out war against Ukraine.

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