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Sutherland Provides Tax Counsel To Altria Group, Inc. In Its Agreement to Acquire UST Inc. For $11.7 Billion

September 9, 2008

WASHINGTON (September 9, 2008)Sutherland is advising Altria Group, Inc. as tax counsel in its acquisition of UST Inc., valued at approximately $11.7 billion. 

Under the terms of the agreement, announced September 8, 2008, UST will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Altria.  The transaction is subject to UST shareholder approval and customary regulatory approvals, which will be pursued promptly.

The Sutherland team advising Altria on this matter was led by Tax Partner Clifford E. Muller in Washington, and included Partner Reginald J. Clark in Atlanta, Partners George H. Bostick and Adam B. Cohen in Washington and Counsel David A. Roby Jr. in Washington.

About Altria  As of September 8, 2008, Altria owned 100% of each of Philip Morris USA Inc. (PM USA), John Middleton Co. (Middleton) and Philip Morris Capital Corporation.  In addition, Altria held a 28.5% economic voting interest in SABMiller plc.

SUTHERLAND ASBILL & BRENNAN LLP
Sutherland is a law firm with global reach known for solving challenging business problems and resolving unique legal issues for many of the world’s largest companies. Founded in 1924, the firm has grown to approximately 500 lawyers handling matters in every part of the world. Seven major practice areas — corporate, energy and environmental, financial services, intellectual property, litigation, real estate and tax — provide the framework that contains an extensive range of specialty areas, allowing its lawyers to serve a diverse client base that includes a number of Fortune 500 companies.

DEAL NOTIFICATION

Target & Acquirer name, nation, business description:  Altria Group, Inc., located in Richmond, VA, USA, owned 100% of each of Philip Morris USA Inc. (PM USA), John Middleton Co. (Middleton) and Philip Morris Capital Corporation. In addition, Altria held a 28.5% economic and voting interest in SABMiller plc, as of September 8, 2008.

UST Inc., located in Stamford, CT, USA, is a holding company for its principal subsidiaries: U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company and Ste. Michelle Wine Estates.

Date Deal Announced:  September 8, 2008

Date of Completion (if applicable):

Deal status:  Pending

Which party firm advised:  Altria Group, Inc.

Advisory role:  Tax Counsel

Deal Description or comments (if necessary):

Value (if disclosed):  $11.7 Billion

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