R.J. Reynolds to buy Santa Fe

Friday, November 23, 2001

RALEIGH, N.C. -- R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Holdings Inc. announced plans Thursday to buy the maker of American Spirit cigarettes.

Details of the offer were scarce on Thanksgiving Day, but a release from RJR said the company had agreed to purchase Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co. for $320 million in cash.

Officials at Santa Fe Natural Tobacco did not immediately return calls for comment. A spokeswoman for RJR said she could not comment on the details of the plan.

The sale is subject to approval by shareholders and regulatory officials. If the deal is approved, Santa Fe would continue to operate from its Santa Fe, N.M., headquarters as a wholly owned, independent subsidiary of RJR, the second-largest cigarette maker in the United States.

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