Marlboro cigarettes to be distributed in India

NEW DELHI: Philip Morris Services India (PMSI) has signed an agreement with Barakat Foods and Tobacco (BFT) Private Limited for the distribution of Marlboro cigarettes in India.

The company plans to directly import the product which will then be distributed by BFT under a non-exclusive distribution agreement. Initially, Marlboro Full Flavor and Lights will be introduced in the metropolitan areas of Western India, a company release says.

The release quotes PMSI GM (India) Ajit Sahgal as saying, "We are confident that our product will compete successfully in the Indian market by quickly gaining popularity among adult smokers." Marlboro is a premium-priced, American blend brand that will compete in the international segment.

Philip Morris International's brand portfolio includes seven of the top 20 international brands, including Marlboro and L&M (which is now the number three largest brand worldwide). Other brands include Philip Morris, Chesterfield, Bond Street, Lark and Parliament. In India, an affiliate of Philip Morris holds a 35.9 percent equity interest in Godfrey Phillips.

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