just the world’s best-known vaping device; it’s a cultural touchstone that has
singlehandedly convinced millions of former smokers around the world to put
down their cigarettes for good. The brand inspires as much devotion among its
users as famous luxury brands like Apple, and if you’re a JUUL® user, you know
exactly what we’re talking about when we say that. So, how well do you know
your JUUL®? We’ve collected 11 little-known JUUL® facts that will enlighten you
about the history of this storied brand.
JUUL® Came Out of the Dry Herb Vaporizer Industry
Today, JUUL® Labs exists as its own company – but that wasn’t always the case. JUUL® began its life in 2015 as a product of PAX Labs, a company primarily known for making dry herb vaporizers. Although PAX Labs is a large company within the vaporizer industry, JUUL® became far, far bigger than any of the company’s vaporizer products. PAX Labs made the decision in 2017 to spin JUUL® out into a new company called JUUL® Labs. Making JUUL® Labs a separate company helped to facilitate its further growth, leading to the partial acquisition of the company by tobacco giant Altria – but we’ll get to that shortly.
JUUL® Labs Has an Impressive Patent Portfolio
It’s not an exaggeration to say that JUUL® changed the vaping industry forever. Like most vaping hardware, the JUUL® device is made in Shenzhen, China. Before JUUL® came along, though, most e-cigarette companies didn’t design their own hardware. They simply bought off-the-shelf products from factories in Shenzhen and put their own logos on those products. E-cigarettes didn’t differ much from one brand to the next. JUUL® was completely different because it was designed from the ground up to be a proprietary product that no one else could sell. JUUL® protects its intellectual property with dozens of patents held around the world. The most important of those patents, though, is arguably the one for JUUL®’s nicotine salt e-liquid formulation. The e-liquid is the reason why the JUUL® delivers nicotine almost as efficiently as a combustible cigarette, and it’s unlikely that the product would have become the success it is without the e-liquid.
The JUUL® Device Has a Built-In Light Show
As we mentioned above, JUUL® was originally a product from PAX Labs. PAX was founded in 2007 by two Stanford graduate students who were studying product design. Their unique design sensibilities resulted in the PAX, one of the world’s most iconic and popular dry herb vaporizers. One of the fun features of the PAX vaporizer is the fact that it has built-in games and other Easter eggs that you can trigger with the device’s motion sensor. JUUL®, being a product from the same designers, also has a built-in light show that the JUUL® community has nicknamed “Party Mode.” To see the light show, simply wave your JUUL® device around in the air after taking a puff. As long as JUUL® remains in motion, the light cycles through a rainbow of colours.
JUUL® Pods Are Designed for One Use Each – But You Can Refill Them Anyway
JUUL® is a perfect example of the classic razor-and-blades business model. The kits aren’t expensive, but you’re definitely going to pay quite a bit of money for JUUL® pods if you use a full pod every day. The expense of the pods is made even worse by the fact that you’re supposed to use each one just once before throwing it away. Enterprising JUUL® users have figured out, though, that refilling a JUUL® pod with bottled e-liquid isn’t actually that difficult. It’s simply a matter of prying the cap off of the pod to expose the reservoir underneath. Once you’ve done that, you can refill the pod with the e-liquid of your choice. If you avoid sweetened e-liquids – which leave deposits that can shorten an atomizer coil’s life – you can usually refill a JUUL® pod several times before it’s time to replace it.
JUUL®-Compatible Products Have Become Their Own Industry
You know that a product has really reached critical mass when companies can become successful simply by making and selling accessories for that product. It’s likely that you already know about the existence of JUUL®-compatible pods – but that’s just where the market for third-party JUUL® products begins. You can find portable chargers, wrap-around decals, protective silicone sleeves, holders that attach to your phone, charging docks, neck lanyards and many, many other third-party JUUL® products. If you can come up with a great JUUL® accessory, you can sell it to a potential customer base of tens of millions of people. Right now, it’s probably a smarter business idea to create and sell JUUL®-compatible accessories than it would be to develop a new vaping product.
JUUL® Vapor Is Worth $38 Billion
JUUL® Vapor is the most valuable company in the vaping industry, and it isn’t even a close contest. The company was valued at $38 billion as of December 2018. Just five months earlier, the company had been valued at $15 billion. That’s some incredibly rapid growth. In October 2018, JUUL® acquired Florida-based VMR Products. VMR – the maker of the V2 Cigs e-cigarette brand – had once been the world’s largest online seller of e-cigarettes. The purchase price for VMR was a paltry $75 million. There is simply no other company in the vaping industry that even comes close to approaching JUUL® Vapor in terms of size, value or market share.
In December 2018, Altria – the maker of Marlboro cigarettes – acquired a 35-percent stake in JUUL® Vapor for $12.8 billion. As part of that deal, JUUL® reportedly received a $2 billion bonus from Altria to split among its 1,500 employees. Although the exact distribution of the bonus depended on seniority, rank and stock ownership, the bonus worked out to an average of $1.3 million per employee.
Altria is a publicly traded company that had a market capitalization of $118.5 billion as of October 2018.
Nearly 75 of 100 Vaping Devices Sold in the U.S. Are JUULs®
As of late 2019, the JUUL® brand had a nearly 75-percent share of the U.S. vaping market in traditional retail outlets. That’s an incomplete picture of the full American vaping market. While retailers such as gas stations, convenience stores, pharmacies and supermarkets report their sales of vaping products, vape shops and online retailers do not. Nevertheless, it’s clear that JUUL® rules the U.S. vaping market. Whenever someone buys a vaping device from a traditional tobacco retailer, there’s an almost three-in-four chance that it’s a JUUL®.
Fake JUUL® Pods Are Pouring Out of China
The factories in Shenzhen are like nothing that most of us in other nations have ever seen. They are incredibly modern, and they can design, prototype and produce a product at the drop of a hat. A huge percentage of the world’s consumer electronics products are made in Shenzhen, and there are around 1,000 factories in the city that produce vaping hardware. Most of the vaping product manufacturers in Shenzhen are entirely legitimate, but there also some that earn their money producing knockoff products.
Counterfeit vaping products are nothing new; they’ve been around as long as the vaping industry has existed. What’s changed, though, is the fact that JUUL® has emerged as the undisputed industry leader. Rather than copying a variety of products from different makers, the factories producing knockoff vaping products in Shenzhen are now focusing primarily on making fake JUUL® pods.
Working along with Chinese authorities, JUUL® Vapor has raided at least 15 factories this year and seized hundreds of thousands of counterfeit JUUL® pods and devices. Nevertheless, fake JUUL® pods continue to reach retailers around the world every day. When you buy JUUL® pods, it is absolutely vital to buy from a retailer you trust.
No One Knows Where JUUL®’s E-Liquid Is Made
One of the fascinating things about JUUL® is the fact that no one knows where the e-liquid for the pods is made. That’s not unusual in the vaping industry – many companies subcontract the production of their e-liquid out to other companies – but it is an interesting thing to think about in light of the JUUL® brand’s massive success. JUUL® sells millions upon millions of pods each year, and all we know about the brand’s e-liquid is that it is made somewhere in the United States.
First-Generation JUUL® Pods Had Triangular Cutouts
Have you been a JUUL® user since the beginning? If you have, you probably know about the many major changes that the brand has gone through in the past few years. One of the bigger changes is the fact that the pods no longer look the same as they once did. The first-generation pods had triangular cutouts, making them look a little like tiny Marlboro cigarette packs. Altria – not yet the partial owner of JUUL® in those days – noticed the similarity and sued PAX Labs. PAX responded by changing the cutout to a trapezoidal shape.
JUUL®’s Original Flavours Had Different Names
It took JUUL® some time to establish its identity. At first, the brand played much more heavily on the double-vowel theme – and that theme carried across the brand’s original four flavour names. Here are the original and current names of JUUL®’s original four flavours:
· Old Name – New Name
· Tabaac – Virginia Tobacco
· Miint – Cool Mint
· Bruule – Crème Brulee
· Fruut – Fruit
Did you prefer the original flavour names, or did you agree that they were just a bit too cute?