E-cigarette maker Juul raises US$325 mln for global expansion

August 20, 2019 09:37
Juul is striving to grow outside the US as American regulators step up oversight on e-cigarette products. Photo: Bloomberg

Electronic cigarette maker Juul Labs has raised US$325 million in an equity and debt offering to speed up its global reach amid intense regulatory scrutiny in its home turf in the United States, Reuters reports.

Juul, 35 percent owned by Marlboro maker Altria Group, did not break out the ratio of equity and debt offered, according to the report.

But it is believed to have sold convertible debt in a bridge financing to bolster its balance sheet.

The latest funding round comes a year after Juul, which launched its products in 2015, raised about US$1.25 billion to fund its explosive growth. Last December, it received about US$12.5 billion from Altria for a stake in the company.

The company has over the past year focused its efforts on growing outside the US, as American regulators increase oversight of e-cigarette products that are wildly popular among teenagers.

Juul launched its products in South Korea, Philippines and Indonesia at around the same time the city of San Francisco, where Juul is headquartered, approved an ordinance to ban the sale and distribution of e-cigarettes until manufacturers get approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 

In July, a US federal court ordered e-cigarette companies to submit applications to the FDA within 10 months to remain in the market, instead of in 2022, the report noted.

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