One of the world's largest tobacco companies, British American Tobacco, has forecast revenue from its vapour products will double to $1.3 billion next year as other firms expand past traditional cigarettes. Matthew Larotonda reports.
One of the world's biggest tobacco companies has announced it expects its revenue from vaping products to double next year to $1.3 billion. British American Tobacco, whose brands include Lucky Strike, Kool, and Dunhill, announcing they expect that sum to multiply five-fold over the next five years. That's still tiny compared to traditional cigarettes, and the company won't break even on the products until next year. But it shows how so-called "Big Tobacco" is increasingly looking for alternatives to your grandpa's smoking habit as more people try to quit. Competitor Philip Morris saw its share price climb 23 percent this year after strong sales of its own vaping products, though it then fell back four percent when its profits turned out to be weaker than expected - again highlighting its dependence on the Marlboro Man. The makers of e-cigarettes say the products carry fewer health risks than other smokes, but long-term studies don't exist yet. And one study earlier this year found that they do release chemicals linked to cancer, and sometimes in higher concentrations than traditional cigarettes.