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Altria Group

Headquarters: 6601 West Broad St.
Richmond, VA 23230
Employees: 9,000
CEO: Marty Barrington
Stock Symbol: MO


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Altria Group is the parent company of Philip Morris USA, U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company, John Middleton, Nu Mark, Ste. Michelle Wine Estates and Philip Morris Capital Corporation and in addition, Altria Group holds a stake in SABMiller, one of the world's largest breweries.

The brand portfolio of Altria's tobacco companies includes such well-known names as Marlboro cigarettes, Copenhagen, Skoal and Black & Mild cigars.  

Philip Morris USA is the largest tobacco company in the United States, with approximately half of the U.S. cigarette market, including the Marlboro brand, Basic, Chesterfield, Lark, L&M, Parliament and Virginia Slims. 

Ste. Michelle produces and markets premium wines sold under various labels, including Chateau Ste. Michelle, Columbia Crest, 14 Hands and Stag's Leap Wine Cellars, and it imports and markets Antinori, Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte and Villa Maria Estate products in the United States.

Altria's 2014 net revenues were $24.53 billion, up 0.2%, and net earnings were $5.07 billion.

Marlboro is Altria's leading cigaratte brand. It generated 118.0 billion units in sales for 2014, down 3.0%. Marlboro accounted for 43.8% of total cigarette market share nationwide.

Total shipment volume of cigarettes by Altria dropped 3% in 2014.

In February 2014, Altria Group announced that its subsidiary, Nu Mark LLC (Nu Mark), entered into an agreement to acquire the e-vapor business of Green Smoke, Inc. for approximately $110 million in cash and up to $20 million in incentive payments.

"Our business results were anchored by a very strong performance in the smokeable products segment, complemented by contributions from our diverse business model," said CEO Marty Barrington. "We're also pleased with the steady progress Nu Mark is making as it builds e-vapor category leadership; Nu Mark successfully executed its national launch of MarkTen, which is now available in over 130,000 retail stores."


Philip Morris, Esq., a tobacconist and importer of fine cigars, opened a cigar shop on Bond Street in London in 1847. Philip Morris made his first cigarette in 1854. Morris died in 1873 and his brother Leopold and wife Margaret took over the business. The Philip Morris Company went public in London in 1881 and established a U.S. division in 1902.

With strong sales of tobacco, the company began manufacturing its own cigarettes by purchasing a factory in Richmond, VA in 1929.

In 1985, the Philip Morris companies acquired General Foods for $5.6 billion. In 1988, it acquired Kraft Foods for $12.9 billion, the largest non-oil acquisition in U.S. history. The company would also acquire Nabisco holdings in 2000.

In 2002, shareholders voted to change the name of the company to Altria Group. This new name became official on January 27, 2003. The name Altria derives from the Latin word "altus", meaning high.  To the Altria family of companies, it connotes an enterprise that aims for peak performance and constant improvement.

It's widely believed that the company name was changed from Philip Morris to deflect criticism and unpopularity with investors over association with cigarettes. The company denies this.

In 2007, Altria officially spun off Kraft Foods as a separately-traded company.

The company spun off Philip Morris International as a separately traded company in 2008.

The company acquired UST in January 2009 for $11.7 billion. U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company is the world’s leading producer and marketer of moist smokeless tobacco products, including its two marquee brands, Copenhagen and Skoal, which outsell all others in the category.

Altria moved its headquarters from NYC to Richmond, VA in 2008.


Philip Morris USA provides the following benefits:

  • Medical coverage that begins on your start date
  • FREE annual preventive health care checkups
  • Free generic prescriptions
  • Dental coverage is provided up to $2,000 annually
  • Orthodontia coverage is 50% up to a $2,500 lifetime maximum
  • Eye exams and lenses are covered every 12 months; frames every 24 months
  • An optional Health Care Flexible Spending Account is available to cover out-of-pocket expenses such as deductibles with pre-tax dollars up to $5,000 annually
And, to meet your financial needs should you become disabled, we offer at no cost to you
  • Business travel accident insurance (that pays on top of other coverage)
  • A short-term disability plan (for up to 6 months), and
  • A long-term disability plan (for periods longer than 6 months).

If you need it, the company provides...

  • A personal Health Advocate to help you navigate the health care system, so you can be sure to find the best doctors, get second opinions, work out billing issues, obtain approvals for services, and get your questions answered.
  • An Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to help you resolve personal problems that may occur. The EAP is available 24/7, and it’s a confidential and voluntary service to help employees through rough patches as such marital distress, family issues, financial problems, substance abuse, legal concerns, and mental/emotional events. But, you can also use it to find dependent care, pet-sitting services, and more.
The company also provides the means to give your family financial security if something unfortunate happens and you are no longer around. We have a group life insurance plan which pays twice your base salary, and the company pays the premium. We have an additional benefit called a survivor income benefit program. Four years after your death as an active employee, your spouse will receive 25% of your base salary, and your eligible children will receive a percentage as well. Also, you can buy additional life coverage at a discounted group rate for yourself and your family. You can insure yourself up to six times your annual base pay.

Speaking of security, we also help you build resources over your career, so you can retire and enjoy some of the profits you helped the company achieve. We provide a deferred profit sharing plan (401k) that enables individuals in salaried positions to receive a company match up to 3% of salary, dollar for dollar, after their first 90 days of service. From the day you start you can generally contribute 15% of your base salary to your retirement account on a pre-tax or after-tax basis. After a year of service you are eligible to receive an additional company contribution that ranges from 10% to 15% of your base salary. The company also provides web-based financial engines to enable you to receive ongoing investment advice about your investments. Company employees, by the way, are provided healthcare coverage even after they retire; they are provided life insurance too.

If your employment is terminated because of a reduction in force or for unsatisfactory performance, you are eligible to receive severance pay based on your salary and length of service.

Beyond the basics

An array of services is available to full time salaried employees to help them balance their personal and work lives. Examples include:

  • Adoption Assistance (up to $3,000 per child)
  • Backup Dependent Care Reimbursements (up to $50 per day for 6 days annually)
  • Paid Time Off for Dependent Care (for a qualified child, parent, spouse, or partner)
  • Paid Time Off for a Child’s School Activities (for school-age children)
  • Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (up to $5,000 with a 10% company match)
  • Three Weeks Paid Vacation to start (more after 10 years service)
  • 14 Paid Holidays each year
  • Vacation Buy Program (for more time off)
  • Educational Refund Program (for tuition and fees)
  • Scholarships for Employee Children (ranging from $500 to $5,000 annually)
  • Service Awards for Anniversary Events
  • Employee Stock Purchase Program
  • Matching Gift Plan (up to $30,000 annually)
  • National Merchant Product and Service Discounts (on vehicles, electronics, and other items)

And finally, depending upon location, other benefits are also available:

  • On-site cafeterias
  • On-site fitness centers (three in all)
  • On-site clinics
  • On-site conference centers
  • On-site company stores
  • On-site copy and print centers
  • On-site ATMs
  • On-site hair salon
  • Credit union memberships
  • Additional healthcare discounts

Updated January 30, 2015

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