RAI & Lorillard Merger Gets Shareholder OK

GREENSBORO and WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Shareholders of Reynolds American Inc. (RAI) and Lorillard Inc. voted overwhelmingly in favor of the $27.4-billion merger between the companies during a special meeting Wednesday.

Final results show that more than 98 percent of voting shares voted in favor of the proposal. This represents approximately 80 percent of all outstanding shares, Lorillard reported.

"I want to thank our shareholders for their continued support of this transaction, which will not only deliver significant value to Lorillard shareholders, but will also benefit our customers, consumers and employees," stated Lorillard Chairman, President and CEO Murray Kessler.

Under the terms of the merger, Winston-Salem, N.C.-based RAI will buy Greensboro, N.C-based Lorillard and keep the Newport, True and Old Gold brands, as CSNews Online previously reported. For each share of Lorillard stock owned, Lorillard shareholders will receive $50.50 in cash and 0.2909 of a share of RAI once the deal closes.

RAI shareholders on Wednesday approved both the issuance of the company's common stock to Lorillard shareholders, as well as the issuance of RAI common stock to British American Tobacco plc through one or more of its wholly owned subsidiaries. Approval of both proposals was a necessary condition to complete the merger.

The merger remains subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions. If approved, the transaction is expected to close during the first half of 2015.

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