A man smokes as he passes the British American Tobacco offices in London.
A man smokes as he passes the British American Tobacco offices in London.Reuters

The strength of sterling plagued cigarette giant British American Tobacco's (BAT) revenue as it dropped by almost a tenth.

The Benson & Hedges manufacturer's revenue in current rates dropped by 9.6% in the nine months leading to 30 September.

At constant rates however its revenue increased by 2.4%.

Total cigarette volume dropped to 515 billion, down from 521 billion in the same period last year, as Western Europe and the Americas consumed less of its tobacco.

Nicandro Durante, chief executive of BAT, said: "The Group grew revenue at constant rates of exchange as a result of a slightly better price mix, despite increased competitive pricing activity in some of our key markets.

"Our volume performance reflects our broad geographic spread, increased market share and excellent growth of our global drive brands. Although currency movements impacted our reported results, the Group continues to perform well and we are on track to deliver another year of good earnings growth at constant rates of exchange."

Shares in BAT dropped by more than 4% to around 3,322.00p in early morning trading as a result of the decrease in revenue.