Federal prosecutors in California have launched a criminal investigation against the electronic cigarette company Juul, based in San Francisco.
The investigation is responsible for Office of the Attorney General of the Northern District of California and is in its early stages, the newspaper said Wall Street Journal, who quoted people familiar with the matter. An office spokesman said he could not confirm or deny this report to Newspaper and a Hulu spokesman declined to comment.
Ulul, the most important manufacturer of electronic cigarettes in the country, It is already under investigation by the Food and Drug Administration, the Federal Trade Commission, Congress and at least six state attorneys general. And investigations also focus a lot on their marketing tactics towards young people.
On the other hand, Ulul has announced that he will no longer advertise for electronic cigarettes and will abandon its lobbying activities in Washington amid growing concern about the harmful effects of evaporators.
Also The company said Wednesday that its chief executive has resigned and will be replaced by CEO from Altria, a manufacturer of Marlboro. Altria bought a 35% stake in Gul in December for $ 13,000m. Also Wednesday, Altria and Philip Morris announced they are suspending merger negotiations.
Ulul promoted electronic cigarettes as a good alternative for adults who want to quit smoking. But the product has become popular with teens, and diseases that are probably related to evaporators are on the rise.
A congressional inquiry revealed that last year ulul paid schools and school programs, including one in Richmond, to talk to teenagers about evaporators. In November, amid pressure from regulators, the company closed its social media accounts and stopped sending sweet and fruity nicotine products to US retailers – believed to be one of the main boomers of young evaporators.
The floors of Juul, a company that owns at least 70% of the US market for electronic cigarettes, contain liquid nicotine which is heated by an evaporator. Nicotine is the same drug addiction in conventional tobacco cigarettes, and studies show that those who are exposed to nicotine at an early age are more likely to become addicted later as their brains are still developing.
Juul has already been sued by parents in several states who say their teens have become addicted to nicotine after using their products.
Neither ulul nor any other brand of vaporizers has been implicated in the recent wave of e-cigarette-related lung diseases. Health authorities have yet to determine what caused the 530 cases of lung disease and nine deaths reported so far. Most cases involved people who smoked cannabis, although some also reported smoking nicotine.
Juul Labs Inc. plans to restructure its workforce by reducing new jobs and reducing some jobs, According to a source familiar with the topic.
The San Francisco-based startup quickly included thousands of employees in line with its global expansion plans. It currently employs about 3,900 people, more than double the staff in December.
In a move to avoid layoffs, ulul asked the heads of some departments to identify key positions for staff to move to new or existing open positions. The company has already introduced a two-week freeze last week.
Investors value it at $ 38,000 million. Among them is Altria Group Inc., which invested $ 12.8 billion last December for a 35% stake. As part of the deal, the employees received a $ 2 billion bonus distributed among 1,500 people at the time. This represents about US $ 1.3 million per employee and will be paid in installments depending on the time the person was in the company.
With information from AP and Bloomberg