Imperial Brands warns on profits as vaping crackdown takes hold
Tobacco company Imperial Brands issued a profits warning on Wednesday as a worldwide crackdown on vaping products takes effect.
First half adjusted earnings per share were forecast to be 10% lower on a constant currency basis, Imperial said ahead of its annual general meeting and a day before a US ban on some flavoured vaping products comes into effect.
Full year group net revenue at constant currency was forecast to be at a similar level to last year and adjusted earnings per share to be slightly lower, Imperial said.
A write down in the value of flavored vaping product inventory due to the US ban would reduce earnings by £45m.
It added that “regulatory uncertainty” and “adverse” news stories about vaping forced it to implement a cost-saving programme which was expected to likely to hit full-year profit by around £40m.
Imperial’s warning came just two days after it named Inchcape boss Stefan Bomhard as its new chief executive.
The car dealership chief will replace Alison Cooper, whose departure was announced in October and who today stepped down with immediate effect.
Imperial also said negotiations to sell its premium cigar business were ongoing.