STATEMENT FROM VMR PRODUCTS CEO JAN VERLEUR ON THE CALL TO BAN 'OPEN SYSTEM' VAPORIZERS BY REYNOLDS AMERICAN INC. October 01 2014
MIAMI, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 09/30/14 -- In response to the 119-page document submitted by Reynolds American Inc. to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asking it to ban "open system" vaporizers and devices, Jan Verleur, CEO & Co-Founder of VMR Products, a global electronic cigarette company and the makers of V2®, a leading brand, has the following comment:
For many adult smokers, vaporizing devices like e-cigarettes represent an alternative to combustible cigarettes, and smokers are increasingly shifting away from combustibles in favor of vaping. As the vapor category begins to mature, users are experimenting with different types of products, and manufacturers like VMR are continuing to innovate to enhance the user experience and accommodate changing tastes. Most recently, we've seen a surge of interest in larger-scale vaporizers that deliver a highly customized and high-quality vaping experience. Sales of open-system products have already exceeded $1 billion as vapers adopt the newer and more sophisticated devices.
In petitioning the FDA to ban these open-system vapor products, RAI wants to limit consumer choice to those segments where it has developed products, wants to curb growth where its offering is weak, or wants to control the e-cigarette market altogether. RAI and its tobacco-company peers clearly have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo, even as technology continues to outpace their offerings and transform the category. The imposition of such arbitrary limitations on this emerging and exciting technology would not only stifle innovation and restrict consumer choice and, very possibly, drive smokers back to combustible cigarettes. We find the RAI request transparently self-serving, anti-competitive, and regressive.