Marlboro parent Altria invests $1.8 billion in cannabis company Cronos

Marlboro parent Altria invests $1.8 billion in cannabis company Cronos



Tobacco giant Altira is investing $1.8 billion in Canadian cannabis company Cronos Group. That will give Altria a 45% stake in the company, with an option for Altria to increase its stake to 55% over the next five years.

"Altria is the ideal partner for Cronos Group, providing the resources and expertise we need to meaningfully accelerate our strategic growth," said Cronos CEO Mike Gorenstein in a statement.

For Altria, once known as Phillip Morris, it’s an opportunity to get comfortable in a nascent market and position itself for the potential national legalization in the US.

Altria’s shares have fallen by more than 20%over the year, as cigarette smoking continues to decline in the US. Federal data this month showed an estimated 14% of adults in the country smoked cigarettes in 2017, the lowest level ever.



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