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Imperial Tobacco Group announces European restructuring projects

15 April, 2014

Imperial Tobacco Group has announced a number of European restructuring projects to strengthen the Group’s competitive position.

The projects are planned to be implemented progressively over the next two years and include the proposed closure of cigarette factories in Nottingham, UK and Nantes, France.

The proposed closures reflect declining industry volumes in Europe, impacted by tough economic conditions, increasing regulation and excise and growth in illicit trade. Production has been affected at the Nottingham and Nantes sites, which now utilise less than half their manufacturing capacity.

The projects could reduce the Group’s workforce by 900. Employees, works councils and trade unions have been informed and consultation processes are now underway. A comprehensive range of measures to support employees will be discussed as part of the consultations.

Alison Cooper, Chief Executive, said: “These projects are an essential part of securing the sustainable future of the business. The prospect of job losses is always regrettable and we will be doing all we can to support employees and ensure that they are treated in a fair and responsible manner.”

The proposed projects support the Group’s cost optimisation programme, which will deliver savings of £300 million a year from September 2018.

Ends

Notes to Editors

Imperial Tobacco Group

Imperial Tobacco Group PLC is a multi-national tobacco company with international strength in cigarettes and world leadership in fine cut tobacco, premium cigars, rolling papers and tubes. The Group has 46 manufacturing sites, 35,000 employees and operates in 160 countries worldwide.

UK Projects

The Nottingham factory and distribution centre employ around 540 people. The factory has capacity to make 36 billion cigarettes a year but will only produce 17 billion in 2014. It is proposed to close the factory and distribution centre, relocating production to other European factories and outsourcing distribution.

France Projects

The Nantes factory employs 320 people. The factory has capacity to make 21 billion cigarettes a year but will only produce 9 billion in 2014. It is proposed to close the factory, relocating production to other European factories.

A further 120 jobs could be affected by proposals to close the Bergerac R&D facility and restructure the sales force and support functions in Paris, although 80 new roles could be created. As a result the total potential impact on roles in France would be a net reduction of around 360.

ENDS

Investor Contacts

Tom Corran, Director of Investor Communications         +44 (0)117 933 7510

Matt Sharff, Investor Relations Manager                          +44 (0)117 933 7396

Jo Brewin, Investor Relations Manager                            +44 (0)117 933 7549

Media Contacts

Simon Evans, Group Press Officer                                  +44 (0)7967 467 684

Iain Watkins, Group Communications Manager             +44 (0)7967 467 064

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