Japan Tobacco acquires Gallaher Group.. .

April 18, 2007 -Japan Tobacco took over Britain's Gallaher Group for US$15 billion Wednesday, both sides said, in the biggest Japanese overseas acquisition ever. The move also allows Japan Tobacco Inc., the world's third-largest cigarette company, to expand outside of Japan, which has seen declining smoking rates. The takeover of Gallaher, the maker of Silk Cut and Benson & Hedges cigarettes, also takes Japan Tobacco into a Western European market, where it now has little presence, creating a tobacco empire with annual global output of 600 billion cigarettes. Tokyo-based Japan Tobacco, the overseas distributor for Winston, Camel and Salem cigarettes, and Gallaher Group PLC had been expected to complete the deal, announced in December.

Reference: Japan Tobacco acquires Britain's Gallaher Group for $15 billion, Huliq News, 4/18/2007)