Vapo National Sales Manager for the UK/EU, Michael Mason, says interest and uptake has so far been strong. Vapo UK will establish a highly visible physical retail presence, as well as strong online availability.
“We’re set to sign with some of the UK’s best well-known vape retailers. Already, we’re in the Phoenix Vapers’ network of stores, with Vapo products also available in Ziggicig throughout Northern Ireland in the coming weeks. Then of course we’re online with our own Vapo UK site, the massive UK Ecig Store, and we’re going live with the extensive Vape Club UK [link] soon,” says Mr Mason.
Vapo UK has brought on board both an established retail distributor and channel partner, with their warehouse in Croydon, just south of London.
The priority product for market is Haiz - one of Vapo’s top selling vape devices in New Zealand, now being actively promoted in the UK. Once sales for Vapo Haiz pod kits and products are well underway, the company’s popular Alt devices will be launched into the UK early next year.
Mr Mason says the UK market is sadly saturated by cheap, low quality, Big Tobacco products that are not a genuine alternative to smoking. “By launching Haiz first, we’re targeting British smokers and vapers with a premium quality device that lasts all day, hits the throat like a cigarette, and is well designed and dependable.”
“We're also unleashing New Zealand’s best-selling flavours, which we created ourselves and so our products carry the sought-after ‘Made in New Zealand’ certification mark. Our e-liquids have also been put through arduous testing, passing with flying colours.”
New Zealander Michael Mason, who has considerable sales and marketing experience, says specialty vape shops and smaller independent retailers are now being approached to be stockists. The next step will be securing larger retailers.
“Vapo and Alt have achieved saturation across supermarkets and service stations in New Zealand. Rest assured, we’ll be using that experience and success to get a foot in the door with large volume UK retailers in the next few years.”
Last month Vapo enjoyed success with its large stand at Vaper Expo UK in Birmingham – Europe’s largest vaping convention, featuring hundreds of the world’s leading vape brands. On 17 November Vapo will be showcasing at the Hall of Vape Hamburg – Germany’s largest trade and consumer fair for vaping.
“Our aim here is it find distributors into key EU markets, initially with Germany, France and Italy, then wider afield including Scandinavia. In the meantime, launching in the UK is a huge development for Vapo. Things are off to a great start and I’m proud to be leading the charge,” says Mr Mason.
Vapo and Alt are leading vape brands in New Zealand and Australia. As the largest Kiwi-owned vape company, their products are now available in over 1,500 outlets throughout New Zealand, including 11 Vapo-branded premium retail outlets.
Vapo founders and owners, Jonathan Devery and Ben Pryor, are delighted Vapo UK has launched. They say the British market presents enormous opportunities, given it now has 3.6 million vapers - up from 700,000 in 2012.
The Kiwi vape entrepreneurs also believe the New Zealand Government should take heed of the highly successful UK regulatory framework and positive public health attitude before legislating against vaping’s appeal to Kiwi smokers.
Vapo Japan has also recently been launched, with the business partners looking at further overseas expansion.