blu Feeling Rosy About Latest Market Share

Published in CSP Daily News

Nielsen report shows Lorillard brand growing in c-stores; LOGIC, NJOY vie for No. 2

By  Mitch Morrison, Vice President & Group Editor

NEW YORK-- Less than 20 months since its acquisition by Lorillard, blu eCigs is holding onto top market share in the convenience channel, followed by LOGIC Technology and NJOY, according to the latest Nielsen report.

The news is important as more than 250 companies are vying for brick-and-mortar and digital space in the U.S. market.

"These figures only reinforce our feeling that we have the most mature and best performing product within a nascent yet rapidly growing retail category," blu eCigs president Jim Raporte told CSP Daily News in an email. "We look forward to continually improving and expanding our product line to meet consumer demand and exceed users' expectations with blu eCigs."

The report by Nielsen C-Track Database and Wells Fargo Securities LLC monitors unit movement, not sales dollars. According to the latest month-over-month tracking from Sept. 28 to Oct. 26, blu held a 37.2% market share, further solidifying its top position.

What is heated is the battle for No. 2. In dollar sales, NJOY remained No. 2, with 21.6% share, slipping from 22.4% in month-over-month dollar sales. LOGIC increased slightly from 17% to 17.8% for the third spot.

"Competing in the $90-billion U.S. cigarette market is a marathon not a sprint, and product innovation is the fuel," Vito Maurici, NJOY's senior vice president of sales and distribution, told CSP Daily News in an email interview. "E-cigarettes have only scratched the surface with smokers in the U.S. and globally, and NJOY has been the innovation leader every step of the way since 2011. And in 2014, we'll continue this leadership."

In unit sales, LOGIC leapfrogged over NJOY for second position, taking home 19.8% market, a nearly 2% increase since end of August. NJOY, for the same two-month period, saw its share dip from 20.4% to 18.8%. That said, the top three makers remain the dominant players in the convenience retail space.

"Our category is rapidly expanding, and these reports show that LOGIC is a key player demonstrating consistent growth month over month in the e-cig space," said Miguel Martin, president of LOGIC Technology. "As evidenced by the latest Nielsen rankings, adult smokers continue to choose a premium priced electronic cigarette that does not mimic the look and feel of traditional combustion based cigarettes."

Rounding out the top 10 e-cig companies in unit sales, CB Distributors Inc. (21st Century) remained in fourth, holding flat at 7.1%. It was followed by Nicotek LLC, Fin Branding and Green Smart Living, all of whom saw share decline month over month. Ballantyne Brands (Mistic), Cigirex LLC and DNA Distributors rounded the final three spots, each with less than 1% share.

By Mitch Morrison, Vice President & Group Editor
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