If you recall our previous article regarding BAT (the British American Tobacco company) creating a device called the “Voke,” you will not be surprised to hear that BAT (which is the UK parent company to Canada’s Imperial Tobacco) has given up on this odd device in favor of the consumer favorite — vaping.
In our review (which you can read above), we described the Voke as an odd nicotine inhaler that was not an E-Cigarette and not a vape device, but a Frankenstein object that was in between both and yet did not fit either category. While it had some sales success in Europe and Asia, it did not take off much in the Western countries and was not introduced to the United States.
This Voke inhaler was a nicotine delivery system that used no battery or heating system (opting for pressure to generate a vapor for inhalation). This may sound great but it contained a cigarette-like inhaler stick and required packs to be purchased.
It was certified as a licensed medical product as opposed to cigarettes and vaporizers, so the market was not very hot for those looking for alternatives to traditional cigarettes. The interest in this new device dwindled quickly and consumers either switched back to cigarette smoking or opted for the better-suited vaping devices for a safer nicotine experience and more options.
BAT is the second-largest international tobacco company in the world behind Marlboro, and rather than continuing to produce the Voke, they sold and will transfer intellectual property, manufacturing, and the how-how assets for the Voke to Kind Consumer, who had licensed the product.
So, if you liked the Voke, don’t worry, it will still be available (although it is not yet on the market) since Kind Consumer is seeking a new global partner to accelerate distribution of the Voke.
The Parent Following its Child’s Footsteps
Imperial Tobacco is a child company of BAT and is located in Canada. Since the Canadian market for smoking is large and mirrors the U.S. market quite well, Imperial Tobacco decided last year to begin focusing on vaping products and E-Cigs in conjunction with their tobacco and cigarette products. This “creating a disease to sell the cure” was tried out by Imperial Tobacco with great success.
The British American Tobacco company is looking at the vaping sales rising and is seeing that t is the primary preference over traditional cigarettes. This means money. These disposable inhalers and nicotine inhalers like the Voke just aren’t attractive options in the current market. And BAT is looking to enter a market that has a lot of potential — and that is E-Cigs and vaping.
BAT’s next generation products will now focus on E-Cig and glo tobacco-heated products. So, selling both tobacco and vape/E-Cig products are a win-win for megalithic tobacco companies such as BAT. They are diversifying their product line to make up for decreased cigarette sales and preparing for a time that they may shift to e-cigarettes and vaping if the traditional cigarette industry ever does go under.
Life and death is just business to big tobacco.