Andrew Napier, the front man for British American Tobacco’s assault
on the anti-tobacco lobby, has left his estimated pounds 200,000-a-year
Investor relations manager Ralph Edmondson confirmed Napier resigned
from his role as consumer and regulatory affairs director two weeks ago,
adding: ’it didn’t work out.’
Napier, a former director of governmental corporate affairs for Ford of
Europe, joined BAT’s board 11 months ago with a brief to build a
consumer and regulatory affairs division.
Reporting to BAT managing director Ulrich Herter, Napier oversaw a team
of scientists, lawyers and PR professionals working to combat the social
and medical arguments against smoking.
The department also put forward BAT’s arguments on issues such as
passive smoking to both government regulators and consumers. It is
understood that Napier is not taking up another job immediately.
BAT, the tobacco arm of BAT Industries, has handed Napier’s
responsibilities to Paul Adams, regional director for Asia-Pacific who
will split the role with his current job.
’It is a full-time job, and Andrew has achieved a lot,’ said BAT
Industries director of group public affairs Michael Prideaux. He added
that Napier had assembled a good team which Adams can now lead.
Prideaux denied that BAT, which owns the Lucky Strike, Pall Mall and
Kent brands, will review the division’s activities in the light of the
Liggett case in the US. Liggett broke ranks with the rest of the tobacco
industry when it conceded that smoking causes cancer two weeks ago.
’People behave as if the argument is over but that is not necessarily
so,’ said Prideaux.
He added the term passive smoking is an ’emotive description,’ and the
idea that it does you harm is ’fanciful’.