A top tobacco industry analyst is predicting $1.7 billion in electronic cigarette sales for 2013 – more than double the previous year’s numbers. Analyst Bonnie Herzog of Wells Fargo Securities said “conservative data” from traditional retail stores already indicates $700 million in e-cig sales this year. Throw in an estimated $500 million to $625 million from online sales of electronic cigarettes and total year-to-date sales are well above $1 billion.
In a CNBC piece posted yesterday, Herzog said the pace will only pickup this Fall and that electronic cigarette sales should reach $1.7 billion by year end. As for the reason for the booming sales, she noted, “everything we’ve been hearing” about e-cigs has suggested an increased awareness and a growing interest in the products.
Well… this comes as no surprise to us. With the wide array of benefits that they can provide, it’s no wonder so many consumers are making the switch to electronic cigarettes.
Will E-Cig Sales Outpace Tobacco???
With annual sales averaging around $80 billion each year, e-cig sales are still dwarfed by the sales of traditional tobacco cigarettes, but the rapid growth is a good sign for the future of these smart alternatives. Herzog, in a recent report, wrote: “We have increased conviction that consumption of e-cigs could surpass consumption of conventional cigs within the next decade.”
Traditional cigarette manufacturers are well aware of the trend. In 2012, Lorillard, maker of popular brands such as Newport and Kent, purchased Blu Cigs, one of the top-selling e-cigarette brands. Back in June Reynolds America (maker of Camel cigarettes) announced the ‘Vuse‘ electronic cigarette, touted to be a “game changer” for that company. And Altria, parent company of cigarette maker Phillip Morris, is planning it’s own line of e-cigarettes do to be released later this year.
It’s not all positive…
But there’s one major hurdle that could hamper all the positive news; possible Food and Drug Administration regulations. There’s an enormous amount of scrutiny being placed on the electronic cigarette industry, and experts are unsure how it will impact the future growth. One thing is for certain, regulations are not going to help the industry, and consumers could be left with higher prices and reduced selection. Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that the FDA had recently discussed a possible ban on the online sale of e-cigs to prevent sales to minors. Although the report was later clarified, the mounting pressure is sure to bring about change.
For now, electronic cigarettes are available to anyone over the age of 18 and can be purchased at a growing number of retail and convenience stores, as well as online. A much safer alternative than traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes can help you limit your exposure to harmful chemicals, tar and ash – while avoiding flames and strong odors that stick to your skin, clothing and everything else.
* Find the latest e-cig news and compare all the top brands at Cig Buyer.com