Juul Labs has reached a distribution agreement with wholesaler UK Vapour Brands (UKVB) to extend its footprint “as much as possible” across British specialist vape retailers.
UKVB, a subsidiary of the Totally Wicked Group, is now an exclusive partner of Juul in the UK and will distribute its products through independent vape stores.
A company spokesperson said that since last week they are offering Juul products to a number of new vape stores, coinciding with the reopening of non-essential shops in England.
Juul estimates that before the Covid-19 pandemic its range of products was available in around 1,200 retailers in the UK. With this “long-term agreement” it aims at least to double that number.
The US vaping manufacturer will still manage some of its own key customers, such as Evapo and VPZ.
Juul is also expected to offer the new stores selling their portfolio a different kind of promotional material, including counter-top units and branded shelf strips. “We will make sure they can promote the brand as effectively as possible,” the Juul spokesperson said.
The manufacturer also explained that the products will have standard prices and promotions and that it will continue to back the Challenge 25 retail strategy, encouraging shops to check ID if a purchaser appears to be under 25.
ECigIntelligence understands Juul will also extend its mystery shopper and age-verification training programme to cover new retailers.
What This Means: The agreement between Juul and UKVB comes at a crucial time for the UK retail sector as it looks to pick up business again after the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions.
Although Juul says the brand is currently “doing well” in the UK, it admits that this new partnership is expected to give an extra boost to its products. ECigIntelligence estimates that vape shops will account for 40% of all vape sales in the UK in 2021.
– David Palacios ECigIntelligence staff and Antonia di Lorenzo business correspondent