As Juul attempts to steady its beleaguered business in the wake of regulatory crackdowns and multiple investigations into its products and marketing tactics, the company is preparing for more layoffs and may ultimately pull out of some overseas markets.
The latest developments appear to indicate things are still very much imploding at the one-time vape giant. The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that Juul may pull out of as many as 11 countries to instead focus its business on its markets in the U.K., U.S., and Canada. The company announced this week that it’s looking at cost-cutting measures as a means of reallocating resources to new products and research.
A spokesperson for Juul would not comment on the number of planned cuts but told Gizmodo the layoffs had not yet taken place. The company said it has “continued to carefully evaluate how we allocate our resources, so we can execute on our long-term approach and control our future in an evolving category lacking in trust.”
“The global pandemic and ongoing economic crisis have thrown in a level of uncertainty around the world for which we need to prepare,” the company said on its website. “To better serve our mission, we must prioritize how we use our resources to execute on our long-term, focused approach. This will allow Juul Labs to continue to invest in science and evidence capabilities, access control technologies and future products in core markets that make up a vast majority of our business. While those investments will not provide short-term revenue, they will help us earn trust and build a company for the long term to advance the potential for harm reduction for adult smokers and combat underage usage.”
Juul has seen a spectacular fall from its prime mere years ago, when it dominated the market for vape products in large part as a result of a surge in the use of its products by teens. A number of regulatory crackdowns both in the U.S. and abroad have seen Juul’s once immensely popular fruity flavors pulled from sale as health officials said the pods contributed to an epidemic of youth nicotine use. In response, Juul has explored a number of measures to curb the sale to and use of its products by minors, including with age-locked verification tools.
The company said this week that its most recent measures were “the correct steps for the company to further secure the business and realize the historic opportunity before us.”