Cancer charity boss criticizes Philip Morris offer to buy Vectura ahead of shareholder vote
- AlizÃ©e Frogue from Cancer Research UK has asthma herself
- “I am shocked by the idea that a tobacco company could profit from my illness”
A Cancer Research UK director has slammed tobacco giant Philip Morris‘s offer to buy a UK inhaler company as it closes the deal.
Alizee Froguel, head of policy at Cancer Research UK and asthma sufferer, said tobacco companies could not be trusted to stop selling cigarettes to “achieve smoke-free ambitions”.
She said: âAs someone with severe asthma who is also working to reduce the burden of smoking on society, I am shocked that a tobacco company may soon profit from my illness.
Vectura shareholders to vote on the Â£ 1.1bn deal on Wednesday
âWhile Philip Morris International says critics of the deal won’t let them walk away from tobacco and be part of the smoke-free world, it’s hard to take it seriously when the acquisition of Vectura could spur the company on. to sell more cigarettes.
âThis is because they would benefit not only from the sales of cigarettes, but also from the treatment of diseases made more prevalent by those sales.
âWe cannot rely on the corporate conscience of Big Tobacco. “
His comments come ahead of Wednesday’s deadline for Vectura shareholders to vote on the Â£ 1.1 billion deal.
Philip Morris, who already owns 29% of the capital, needs the support of more than 50% of the shareholders.
One of the top 20 investors told The Mail on Sunday that he would support the offer, saying it was the best result for investors. But the potential deal has sparked a strong backlash.
Philip Morris International has said it is “accelerating its journey to end cigarette sales altogether.”