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Altria has bought a 35% stake of JUUL Vapor for $12.8 billion dollars. The Big Tobacco company valued JUUL at almost $40 billion, making it the biggest player in vaping. Big business and corporate interests have been creeping into vaping for years. With this most recent transaction, it is clear that Big Tobacco sees vaping as the future.
In the wake of this marriage between JUUL and Big Tobacco, a couple of the original e-cig brands have been casualties. Both V2 Cigs and Green Smoke are now gone. Both have been permanently shuttered. Once the giant corporate interests get involved, it is only about money and market share. That's just the cold reality.
JUUL Vapor went from 16% market share in 2016 to 75% market share in 2018. That market share is measured by retail sales, not online sales. So Freeman, VooPoo, Beard and others are not sold in convenience stores where big corporations have a monopoly on the products that you see in almost all C-stores.
In fact, by Altria buying into JUUL, one advantage for JUUL is that they will gain access to Altria's massive distribution network. That means that JUUL will be on the shelves of every store that sells Altria cigarettes.
At Freeman Vape Juice, we are not affiliated with big tobacco. We don't answer to a corporate board or shareholders. You will never see our juice on the convenience store shelves beside the packs of smokes. We are all about one on one relationships with our customers. As an independent American business, our focus is making awesome vape juice at the lowest price.