Posted by Chris Bussell on January 20, 2015
I have been an avid reader of the Motley Fool since 2005. I have even subscribed to some of their paid newsletters in the past. However, I was a little surprised the other day when I came across their January 17, 2015 article, "Bad News for Electronic Cigarette Users: E-Cigs May Be More Dangerous Than Initially Thought".
The author, Sean Williams, takes a one sided approach to the electronic cigarette debate and I just can't help but believe he has the ulterior motive of helping "The Motley Fool" continue to sell their newsletters and pump up their own Healthcare related stock picks. I don't fault him, because it is capitalism fueled by advertisement. I mean, in a sense that's what we here at the Fog Blog try to do for the Vaping community. We attempt to raise awareness of the successes we have had against smoking cigarettes and if we can bring in a customer to us or to a local shop- then we have done our part. The difference between our articles and this author's is that we will provide you with all the information we can and let you choose what is best for you. (Case in point you can find his entire article below)
Because this Fool-ish article is investment themed, I will speak to the investment aspect of his argument. Those that are familiar with "The Motley Fool" and their co-founder David Gardner know that he preaches innovation and companies that are "rule breakers" willing to upend traditional markets by introducing a product that ultimately kills off the competition. Think what DVD did to VHS, and BlueRay did to DVD, and that is one of David Gardner's Rule Breakers. That said, if there has ever been a product that continues to explode in popularity and kill a market...the cigarette market, IT IS VAPING. In September of 2013 Forbes Magazine estimated that by 2015 the market for eCigs would hold a $3 Billion share; that market share is now closer to $3.5 Billion at the beginning of 2015.
Is it easy to make money in this sector? Not at all- it requires investment capital, time, dedication, product knowledge, innovation, and everything else that it requires to run a business or invest your money wisely.
Is the potential for investment growth here? Absolutely. First, in my opinion we are still at the beginning stages of vaping and will continue to see growth and consolidation in our sector, because there are millions of people worldwide that are addicted to cigarettes and want a less harmful alternative that actually works. Secondly, the Big 3 cigarette producers have seen the writing on the wall and have introduced their own eCig products. Finally, the sector has seen growth of 350% since that earlier mentioned Forbes article was published, when vaping was only $1 Billion industry in September 2013.
As an investor in this sector it is up to you decide how you want to invest; be it owning a vape shop, finding a company to invest in, or investing in yourself through using the product and reducing harm.
I completely disagree with Sean Williams' assertion and believe this is a great time to invest in vaping...monetarily or personally.
If you enjoy talking vape, testing, and writing/recording product reviews give us a shout if you are interested in becoming a contributor.
(About the author: Chris Bussell is a vape enthusiast, owner/partner in several vape shops, eLiquid Manufacturer, and daily blower of clouds. He is an Active Army National Guard Warrant Officer, holds a Master’s of Strategic Intelligence, and gets to plan satellite networks for a living.)
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