Altria Group Inc. (NYS:MO) said Friday it has agreed to sell its Ste. Michelle Wine Estates business to private-equity firm Sycamore Partners Management L.P. for about $1.2 billion in cash. Altria expects the deal to close in the second half of 2021. The deal is expected to allow the company focus on its transition to non-combustible products. Proceeds will be used to fund share buybacks, subject to board approval. Altria shares were up 0.8% premarket and have gained 13% in the year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW:DJIA) has gained 12.5% and the S&P 500 (S&P:SPX) has gained 15%.
July 9, 2021, 8:38 a.m. EDT