Altria to buy e-cigarette maker NJOY after Juul fiasco

STORY: Just days after ending its disastrous investment in Juul, Altria Group, maker of Marlboro, is pivoting to one of Juul’s rivals.

The tobacco giant on Monday announced it will buy e-cigarette startup NJOY for about $2.75 billion in cash… in a fresh bet it can keep a foothold in the vaping industry without losing its shirt.

And NJOY just may be the way to do that, as six of the company's products have received full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Juul, by comparison, is still seeking approval of its products and could therefore see its e-cigarettes pulled from shelves by the FDA as it briefly did last year.

Altria’s stake in Juul, valued at $12.8 billion in 2018, has dwindled to just $250 million.

Last week Altria essentially exited Juul by exchanging that investment for a stake in the vaping company’s intellectual property.

As for NJOY, its U.S. market share still lags well behind that of Juul.

The NJOY deal however will also include an additional $500 million in cash payments based on regulatory approvals of the company's other products.