Gallaher reports increase in sales

British tobacco company Gallaher Group Plc, said its first-half group total cigarette sales were up 2.1%

The Weybridge based company revealed today that its profit before tax increased by 14.7% to £259m when compared to £225m for the same period last year.

The company, whose cigarette brands include Benson & Hedges, Silk Cut and Mayfair said its outlook for the rest of the year was in line with its expectations despite some tough European markets.

Nigel Northridge, chief executive, said: “I am pleased with these results which demonstrate the effectiveness of Gallaher's international expansion.

“We have delivered organic growth in the first six months despite significant challenges in some of our European markets. Our expectations for the full year remain unchanged.”