Leading the growth of a new category
We launched our first vapour product – a Vype e-cigarette – in 2013 and today we are one of the world’s leading vapour companies.
Vapour products are rechargeable, battery-powered devices that heat liquid formulations – e-liquids – to create a vapour which is inhaled.
Most vapour products are based on ‘coil and wick’ technology. The coil – also known as an atomiser – heats a cotton wick which conveys the liquid, producing a vapour that is inhaled.
Because vapour products don’t burn tobacco, the vapour contains substantially lower levels of the toxicants found in the smoke produced when tobacco is burned. This provides one indication that vapour products have reduced-risk*† properties when compared with conventional cigarettes.
Generally, vapour products are either closed or open systems. Closed systems feature a closed cartridge containing e-liquid. Vapers insert replacement cartridges to continue using the device. Open systems enable the vaper to refill the e-liquid and mix flavours to their taste.
Most e-liquids contain water, propylene glycol and glycerol, flavourings and nicotine, although some e-liquids don’t contain any nicotine.
We are now one of the world’s leading vapour companies. Vype, our flagship vapour brand, is now present in most major vaping markets including the UK. We also own leading brands in the UK (Ten Motives) and Poland (Chic). We further enhanced our vapour products portfolio in 2017 with the acquisition of the VIP brand.
We launched our first Vype product in 2013 and today our range provides a choice of closed and open systems to meet vapers’ varied preferences in 27 markets around the world.
In the US, the R.J. Reynolds Vapor Company – a Reynolds American Inc. operating company – was formed in 2012 and started selling Vuse digital vapour products in 2013. The Vuse range includes the Vuse Alto, a closed system that uses a cartridge to deliver vapour, Vuse Solo, which uses a vapour delivery processor to ensure consistent performance, and Vuse Vibe, a simple and intuitive tank device.
By December 2020, our vapour products were present in a total of 27 markets as we continued to roll out to new markets and we were the leading vapour company in the key European markets.
In 2020, Vuse and Vype performed well across all the top five vapour markets (US, Canada, Germany, UK and France which, collectively, represent over 75% of global industry vapour revenue), rebounding well from the EVALI crisis in 2019 and the implementation of the US flavour ban in early 2020. Total volume of vapour consumables was up 52% to 344 million units in 2020.
BAT’s performance in 2020 was supported by the growth of e-commerce, with Vuse/Vype being the most visited branded e-commerce site across the majority of the main vapour markets, and ranking No.1 for branded search against competitors. In December, Vuse/Vype had over 17,500 subscribers (up 5x since January 2020) with the average subscriber lifetime value equal to 3x that of a traditional retail customer.
In November 2019, we announced that we are creating three global brands for our New Category product portfolio, with our vapour products moving to Vuse. This brand consolidation is set to be complete, on a phased basis, by the first half of 2021
* Our vapour product Vuse, as sold in the US, is subject to FDA regulation and no reduced-risk claims will be made as to this product without agency clearance.
* Based on the weight of evidence and assuming a complete switch from cigarette smoking. These products are not risk free and are addictive.
† Our products as sold in the US, including Vuse, Velo, Grizzly, Kodiak, and Camel Snus, are subject to FDA regulation and no reduced-risk claims will be made as to these products without agency clearance.