A Billion Dollar Vape Company Hits The Market

An e-cigarette brand in China called RLX Technology raised $1.4 billion by offering 116.5 million ADSs at $12, above the range of $8 to $10. At the pricing, the company commanded a market value of $18.6 billion. Shares spiked and were lately selling at over $25 with the symbol RELX and now has a $49 billion valuation.

Renaissance Capital noted that the company “boasts a 62.6% market share in China for closed-system e-vapor products in terms of retail sales. The company has partnered with 110 authorized distributors to supply its products to over 5,000 RELX Branded Partner Stores, and over 100,000 other retail outlets nationwide, covering over 250 cities in China. Revenue nearly doubled in the nine months ended September 30, 2020, to $324 million, with net income of $16 million.”

“Our mission is to make RELX a trusted brand for adult smokers through state-of-the-art products, industry-leading technologies and scientific advances in collaboration with talented and committed people around the globe. We are the No. 1 branded e-vapor company in China, capturing 48.0% and 62.6% of the market share of closed-system e-vapor products in terms of retail sales value in 2019 and the nine months ended September 30, 2020, respectively. We have launched five series of rechargeable closed-system e-vapor products, and we deeply engage in the key activities in the e-vapor industry, from scientific research, technology and product development, supply chain management, to offline distribution. We partner with 110 authorized distributors to supply our products to over 5,000 RELX Branded Partner Stores and over 100,000 other retail outlets nationwide, covering over 250 cities in China. China’s e-vapor market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 65.9% from 2019 to 2023. Our net revenues increased from RMB133 million in 2018 to RMB1,549 million ($228 million) in 2019, and RMB2,201 million ($324 million) in the first nine months of 2020.”

Despite the vape crisis of 2019 and then the Covid pandemic which specifically affected people’s lungs, vaping has continued to grow in popularity. Juul pods were marketed to teens with candy type flavors, which caused the government to begin regulating and banning such marketing. Still, the smoking method has remained popular due to its convenience. It also remains to be a popular form factor for cannabis consumers.

Here are the top 5 selling cannabis cartridges of 2020, according to LeafLink List:

    • Grease Monkey Cartridge from Platinum Vape (MI)

    • PLUGPlay Express 1g Cartridge from PLUGPlay (CA)

    • Skydoggie 1g Cartridge from Raw Garden (CA)

    • 1000mg Lemon Faderade Cartridge (Energy) from Timeless Vapes (AZ)

    • 1g High Potency Cartridge from Batch (CO)


Challenges Remain

Fortis Law Partners doesn’t think vaping is completely out of the woods just yet. The company recently said they expect to see more insurance companies use the fact that COVID-19 is a respiratory illness as a reason to add more exclusions to policies, particularly for businesses that specialize in vaping and/or other smokable cannabis products. “In addition, a new Colorado rule goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2021, requiring cannabis manufacturers to test the vapor emissions from their products—i.e., what consumers are actually inhaling—in addition to the oil itself.”


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