The crown Juul of the vape industry is now worth more than $10B

Juul is dominating the e-cig market by taking a page of Big Tobacco’s playbook and appealing to young smokers.


June 21, 2018

 

Juul Labs, the makers of every 8th-grader’s favorite e-cig, is worth more than $10B, according to insiders who spoke with The Information.

In spite of investor skepticism about the health dangers of the USB-shaped nicotine qsticks, the company has adapted Big Tobacco’s playbook to the era of social media — and grown large enough to challenge Big Cig’s bigwigs.

Juuls are on fire

You know, because they burn nicotine…. 

Also because the 3-year-old company, which has only raised $111.5m in a single round of funding, has managed to edge out Big Tobacco companies for more than 64% of e-cig market share.

Meanwhile, Philip Morris’ stock dropped nearly a third last year and R.J. Reynolds’ e-cig market share dropped by half. 

They say history doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme… 

And Juul sure sounds a lot like Kool, the flavored cigarette that targeted kids in the early 2000s.

Juul isn’t just imitating Big Tobacco’s success but also its tactics — with fruity flavors and promises of a safer smoking alternative.

So far, Juul’s marketing attempts are paying off — when Juul launched in 2015 e-cigarette use among high-school students surpassed regular cigarette use for the first time ever. Yet, more than of teen vapers reportedly didn’t know that Juul contained nicotine.

Check YouTube — all the Juul kids are doing it

Juul has turned the brand into a social-media cult classic — YouTube sensation DonnySmokes is a popular evangelist — but worried moms, morally righteous investors, and liberal cities are trying to crack down on Juuls in schools. 

So to improve its public image and keep vapenation puffing away, Juul is investing $30m to keep the devices out of kids’ hands — which sounds a lot like that time cigarette companies paid for lung cancer research… 

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