Designed to be smaller and easier to use than the “box-style” designs currently on the market, Bo Vaping’s closed-system device seemed like the perfect fit for the U.S. market, where vapers have found many of the available systems to be too cumbersome and complex. And it was—except that manufacturing issues caused the batch of products brought to the U.S. in 2016 to be plagued with problems, including leaky pods that appeared to be discolored or burned.
To remedy the problem, JWell, the company that makes the product, needed to reconfigure the manufacturing process to address those issues. “Our innovative pod is now leakproof and sure to wow former Bo users back into the fold,” says a company spokesperson, who notes that key features of the pod include a strong battery life, a 15-minute charge time, temperature control that promotes consistency, and a sleek and sophisticated design. Bo Vaping has always taken great pride in their superior devices.”
The company remains committed to pods, which it sees as the right option for convenience-minded American consumers seeking a portable, easy-to-use device. “We feel that our strong consumer base prefers not to fill their own pods,” says the spokesperson. “They are looking for something a little more user-friendly, so to speak.”
Bo pods, which are available in single-pod packs, come in four flavors, including Butterscotch Tobacco, Melon, Gold Tobacco and Icy Mint. “They will still be the same 1.6 mL size and compatible with our original device design, but now we offer consumers the option to try all flavors without having to buy multiple,” says the spokesperson, who added that the company currently offers only a 5 percent nicotine concentration. “But keep an eye out, as we have lower levels making their way back to market shortly.”
To make sure consumers recognize the new, improved Bo, JWell also redesigned the company’s packaging, choosing a white background and black lettering for a sleek and streamlined look. “It will be more eye-catching in stores, and the smaller display will take up one-fourth the space it used to,” says the spokesperson. With the single-pod pack, we had simplicity in mind.” In fact, the brand’s motto is: “Bo. Just Simple.”
The company is keeping an eye on the potential for competition from the type of heat-not-burn products that have been successful in overseas markets, but JWell doesn’t see that category as much of a threat to Bo. “We feel this is a different type of customer—one that doesn’t mind still smelling like cigarettes. We’re confident that the effects will be minimal, but we’ll keep an eye out, as those products are not available in the U.S. yet.”
U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulation, however, could be an issue, says the spokesperson. “Regulation is good for a market. Over-regulation is bad. The question is, which is it going to be: healthy regulation to aid in maturing this market or
over-regulation to stifle it?
Whichever way the FDA goes, Bo Vaping is ready for the coming regulatory climate, the spokesperson notes. “Regulation is not new to us, and with the help of our legal and compliance team at Morgan Lewis and Arcus, we feel ready for whatever comes.”
This story first appeared in the November/December 2018 issue of Tobacco Business magazine. Members of the tobacco industry are eligible for a complimentary subscription to our magazine. Click here for details.
– Story Jennifer Gelfand, editor-in-chief of Tobacco Business Magazine.