BAT Korea and PMI Target Growth in South Korean E-cigarette Market

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BAT Korea is gearing up to introduce its e-cigarette product “Vuse Go 800” in the South Korean market despite the declining market size for liquid e-cigarettes in the country.

According to a report from the South Korean news outlet EToday on November 25th, BAT Korea, the South Korean branch of the multinational company British American Tobacco, is preparing to launch its e-cigarette product “Vuse Go 800” across the country.

The South Korean government had previously advised citizens to refrain from using liquid e-cigarettes and planned to reduce the market size of such products in 2020. However, a limited release of Vuse Go 800 in major cities such as Seoul and Gyeonggi Province received better market response than expected, prompting BAT Korea to consider nationwide sales of the product.

In addition, Philip Morris International (PMI) has filed trademark applications for IQOS VEEV NOW and VEEV One with the Korean Patent Office, hinting at the potential release of these products. The product has already been launched in approximately 10 European countries, including Canada, Croatia, the Czech Republic, and France.

Industry insiders predict that KT&G, a South Korean company, will adopt a cautious approach due to its previous experience of launching and subsequently discontinuing the liquid e-cigarette product “Lil Vapor” in May 2019.

The domestic liquid e-cigarette market in South Korea is predominantly dominated by small and medium-sized companies. One representative example of this is Bubblemon, which has already made its way onto the shelves of convenience stores across the country.

According to an industry expert, “Liquids e-cigarettes have gained wide popularity worldwide due to their convenience in use and portability. Consequently, the market share of liquid e-cigarettes in the domestic tobacco industry is expected to increase.”

[1] ‘쥴 떠나고 버블몬 주도’ 액상형 담배시장…대형업체 다시 군침
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