Tiger Global Is Said to Get $1.6 Billion From Altria’s Juul Deal
A Juul Labs Inc. e-cigarette and flavored pods are arranged for a photograph in the Brooklyn Borough of New York, U.S. (Photographer: Gabby Jones/Bloomberg)

Tiger Global Is Said to Get $1.6 Billion From Altria’s Juul Deal

(Bloomberg) -- Partners at Tiger Global Management are looking forward to a special holiday bonus this year.

Next week, the U.S. fund will receive a $1.6 billion cash dividend after its portfolio company, electronic cigarette startup Juul Labs Inc., sold 35 percent of itself to tobacco giant Altria Group Inc., according to people familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified because the details are private. Both Juul and Tiger Global declined to comment.

The money is part of Altria’s $12.8 billion deal for a minority stake in the company. The tie-up values Juul at $38 billion, making it one of the most highly valued technology startups, surpassing Space Exploration Technologies Corp. and Airbnb Inc.

Following the deal, Juul decided to use a portion of its Altria cash injection to pay dividends to its shareholders and give a cash bonus to its staff, the people said. Employees of Juul Labs will receive about $2 billion in cash bonuses. Shareholders stand to make significantly more.

This morning, Juul Chief Executive Officer Kevin Burns wrote to investors promising them a cash payment of $150 for each share they hold.

Lee Fixel, a partner at Tiger Global, led its roughly $600 million investment in the company earlier this year, said the people. As a result of the dividend payment, the fund will more than double its money, and stands to make considerably more from its stake in the company in the future, because Juul is still privately held.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

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