Altria (formerly Phillip Morris USA) is the most successful corporation in all of history. It has consistently paid dividends for 54 years, and has never missed a beat. And, it has increased the amount or its dividend 52 times in 54 years.
The people who manage Altria are very long term thinkers. They aren't just sitting around the table saying, "Geez, I guess nobody will be smoking cigarettes in 20 years, so our company will be out of business."
They are totally out in front of anything and everything relating to smoking, and nicotine delivery. They let small start-up companies do all of the research for new products, spend huge amounts on R&D for the new products, and spend the marketing dollars to create a successful brand. Then, if the small company actually becomes successful, they just walk in and buy it for a couple of billion in cash. They have done this over and over.
Never bet against big tobacco!
Remember 10 years ago, when the tobacco companies had to enter a settlement agreement with all of the States and Federal government, for the class actions filed against them for cancer and health problems? They agreed to pay billions of dollars into a settlement fund, and EVERYBODY said that that would be the end of big tobacco, and that they would go bankrupt!
Well, Atria just raised the prices of its cigarettes by 25 cents per pack for three or four years in a row, paid it into the settlement fund, laughed, and continued to make more and more money for itself. Sure, they ran the ads that told people to quit smoking. So what? It is an addictive product.