The cigarette industry has gone a topsy-turvy! For a few decades now, the traditional cigarette industry has been under attack—by the government and the common people. A downward trend began as early as 1998, and has only continued to steep further.
The sales in figures
From what used to be a booming market, an average drop of 3%-4% has been noted since the last couple of years. In fact, the first quarter of the previous year recorded a drastic decline of 6.2% in retail sales. 2013 has not begun on a great note either, with the first quarter showing a 4.5% drop.
Reasons for decline
Various economic factors, higher cigarette tax impositions, hike in gas prices and an increased payroll tax have been accounted as major reasons for the downfall of the tobacco market. Besides, a ban on smoking at public places, deeming it as illegal, has further fortified the decline. Also, one cannot ignore the adverse health effects smoking comes packed with.
The rise of E-Cigs
Meanwhile, Electronic Cigarettes have been showing puffed-up sales. These battery-powered tubes, simulating the smoking experience have gained acceptance far and wide.
In fact, reports suggest that in 2011, about 21% smokers, in an attempt to quit smoking, switched to E-Cigs. This showed an increase of 10% from 2010. Besides, the E-Cigs industry made a whooping $500 million profit last year. In fact, Wall Street Journal predicted that the retail sales of E-Cigs are expected to touch $1 billion by this yearend.
Known as just another innovation until a few years back, E-Cigs have come a long way. In fact, some industry analysts have predicting that E-Cigs will actually out-do the traditional smoking industry within the next ten years. This accounts to be a very bold statement, considering that the sales of E-Cigs account to only 1% of the serious $80 billion cigarette industry.
Why E-Cigs have gained popularity?
The doubled amount of sales in the E-Cigs industry has been made possible due to aggressive advertising, marketing and distribution. Besides, awareness has played the key role here. It has also been observed that E-Cigs contain relatively less harmful elements and have been the preferred choice for individuals who are looking to quit tobacco.
According to a survey on re-sellers and wholesalers, representing almost 45,000 U.S convenience stores, it was observed that E-Cigs are being sold all over. In fact, it was noticed that 98% suggested a growth in sales, which averaged to almost a 30% hike.
A surprising revelation recently came from big tobacco players, including Altria, the owner of Marlboro that announced plans to enter the E-Cigs industry by the end of this year. Already in the bandwagon are Lorillard and Reynolds American, the third and the second largest tobacco companies in the world respectively. According to these companies, their profits have been affected by E-Cigs.
With all these facts in place, the exceptional growth in E-Cigs sales is obvious. Besides, we can safely conclude: Electronic Cigarettes are igniting the tobacco industry!