Imperial Tobacco 1901

Bristol, Bristol, England, United Kingdom

Imperial Tobacco Group PLC was founded in 1901 through the amalgamation of thirteen British tobacco and cigarette companies in light of the threat by an American tobacco company. In 1902 the then Imperial Tobacco Company and the American Tobacco Company agreed to form a joint venture; the British-American Tobacco Company Ltd and the Imperial Tobacco Group remained interested in the American market until 1980. By 1973 the company changed name to Imperial Group Limited, later Imperial Group PLC as it diversified into other areas including restaurant chains, food services and brands and distribution. In 1986, it was acquired by Hanson Trust plc who dramatically reorganised the company. In 1996 it was decided that the company should concentrate on core tobacco businesses and Imperial was demerged and was listed on the UK stock market as an independant company.