JUUL Labs Inc., the largest and most popular e-cigarette manufacturer in the U.S., recently went international as it began selling its products in China. The international launch of a product is typically a moment of celebration for many companies, but for JUUL, a new business opportunity has turned into yet another controversy an obstacle.
A week after its products began to be sold in China, JUUL’s vaping device and nicotine pods have already been pulled from stores and distribution in the country without any explanation. Some of its products, including its mint, mango, creme and Virginia tobacco-flavored pods, were being sold through Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s Tmall and JD.com Inc. online commerce stores. By the end of the week, however, JUUL’s products on these sites were removed without warning.