Imperial Tobacco could be set to hit the acquisition trail, according to press reports.

Shares in the Golden Virginia and Drum maker rose by more than 1% yesterday amid rumours it could be plotting a bid for one of its rivals. US tobacco giant Lorillard has been touted as a possible target, according to the Financial Times.

The news comes in the wake of Alison Cooper last month taking over as Imperial chief executive from Gareth Davies.

However, Cooper has previously indicated that her priority for the company would be organic growth rather than through acquisitions.

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