TOBACCO giant Imperial Brands confirmed yesterday that it is in talks to help save Palmer & Harvey, the UK's biggest cigarette supplier.
Imperial said it was seeking to create a "sustainable future" for P&H, which supplies Tesco and other major retailers.
Shares in Imperial closed down 4.02 per cent yesterday following the announcement, which was made in a trading update in which the company said it was trading in line with expectations.
Buyout firm Carlyle is thought to be leading the rescue bid and convenience chain McColl's co-founder James Lancaster is also understood to be involved.
This latest news surrounding the rescue deal for the UK's biggest cigarette supplier comes on the same day that the tobacco industry advocacy body releases findings around the illicit cigarette trade.
The Tobacco Manufacturers' Association found 72.5 per cent of UK smokers buy tobacco from taxfree sources, such as buying it abroad or duty-free at airports.
The body estimates that this means the government loses out on £3bn in tax revenue from tobacco.
(c) 2017 City A.M., source Newspaper