BAT Korea reaffirmed its plan to reach a wider audience with potentially-reduced risk products on Tuesday as it cited the success of recent digital marketing efforts to promote e-cigarettes.
“Sales promotions for Glo Pro last month took place both online and in-store and it was especially well received online and we managed to sell out the stock we prepared quicker than expected,” said Yu Jung-min, head of offline activation at BAT Korea during an online press event.
“Diversifying sales channels gave us an opportunity to rebound from a recent decline,” she added.
Tuesday’s event, dubbed ‘BAT Innovation Day.” lasted for over an hour as the global tobacco company showcased its focus on innovation in relation to its brands, products, and manufacturing technology.
When asked about the decision to continue to release regular tobacco products despite the company’s emphasis on its environmental, social and governance approach, Yu said sales of regular tobacco products, which account for most of its sales, are essential to ensuring investment.
The company also offered an industry-first virtual factory tour during the event, demonstrating the technology behind its manufacturing facility in Sacheon, South Gyeongsang Province, where the company is making its first new product of the year, the KENT Double Fresh, and its tobacco heating products, Glo neo sticks.
The BAT Sacheon Factory, which opened in 2002, is now home to some 1,000 employees. BAT is the first foreign tobacco company with a production facility in the country, the company said.
By 2009, the factory had produced a total of 100 billion cigarettes. As its export volume grew, the figure reached 200 billion by 2016 and 300 billion by 2019.
In December, BAT Korea surpassed $400 million in exports, up 13 percent from the previous year.
Kang Seung-ho, head of manufacturing at the BAT Sacheon Factory, said the company seeks to preemptively respond to environmental responsibility of their product manufacturing.
“To this end, we plan to build ‘A Better Tomorrow’ through a series of investments – including the installation of solar power generation facilities, enforcement of recycling through wastewater purification, and ensuring zero landfill waste.”
Last year, the company announced it is teaming up with LS Electric to introduce solar power generation facilities at its Sacheon factory, with construction poised to begin in March
When completed, the factory is expected to generate up to 1,435 kilowatts of electricity through solar power, which will constitute a “remarkable amount of carbon reduction,” the company said.
Kang also said the Sacheon factory has recently been selected by the BAT Group as the ‘lighthouse’ factory that will lead the Fourth Industrial revolution, which he said is a sign that will guarantees “continuous investment” from the group.
By Yim Hyun-su (email@example.com