Juul's Major Frustration in Asian Expansion: Unlimited Suspension of glass pipes Sales in Indonesia
On February 25, according to reports from Reuters, Juul Labs Inc stopped selling electronic cigarettes in Indonesia on the grounds that it was worried that retailers could not be prevented from selling their high nicotine content glass pipes for smoking to young people in the unregulated tobacco market.
When asked by Reuters about Juul's marketing activities to local young people and two other Asian countries (Philippines and South Korea) operated by the company, Juul disclosed his Indonesian plan to Reuters.
Reuters's review of Juul's marketing in Asia found that the company promoted e-cigarettes in a way similar to the way that angered US regulators.
Juul said in a statement that it would suspend sales in Indonesia indefinitely until it can ensure that online and traditional retailers there increase and implement age restrictions and compliance measures.
The company's decision to withdraw from the market of the world's fourth most populous country marks a major setback to Juul's larger plan to expand in Asia. Among the growing legal and regulatory issues in the United States due to its role in the popularity of young smoke shop people in the country, the region is seen as crucial to the company's growth.
A former employee and another source familiar with his Asian sales strategy said Juul launched the product in Indonesia seven months ago because it attracted the country's relaxed regulatory environment.
According to the two sources and Juul's current employees, the company's target customers are between 19 and 35 years old.
A Juul spokesman said the company only wants adult smokers to use its products.
Juul said last month that it was reviewing its strategy and operations in South Korea due to disappointing sales. South Korea has conducted a regulatory review of the company. Juul also postponed expansion plans in the Netherlands and New Zealand. The company said it was conducting a case-by-case review of overseas operations.
In Asia, Juul continued to sell fruit and dessert-flavored nicotine cartridges and voluntarily withdrew from U.S. store shelves due to criticism of its appeal to young people.
In Indonesia, Juul has already sold its products in cinemas and shopping centers frequented by young people, and sold its glass pipes org bearclaw in kiosks and Juul brand fashion stores imitating Apple stores. The company also employs "ambassadors" (usually attractive young women) to promote Juul in bars and nightclubs.
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