SPRING LAKE, Mich. -- Victory Electronic Cigarettes Corp. completed an acquisition of VIP, a U.K.-based electronic cigarette company, for a combination of cash and stock in excess of $50 million. This marks Victory's second European acquisition this year.
VIP is available across Europe at its own retail stores, retail mobile kiosk units, online and at traditional retail outlets. The brand, which was launched in 2009 by co-founders Miguel Corral and David Levin, holds the No. 1 market position in Ireland.
The company's product portfolio includes traditional rechargeable and disposable e-cigarettes; the latest mods, open and closed vaping systems; tanks; and liquids. All of the VIP products are packaged in tamper-evident, child-proof packaging.
According to Victory, VIP recently began expansion to major retailers in the United Kingdom, including major supermarket chains throughout the country.
"Of all the electronic cigarette companies, VIP was the most profitable company as a percentage of sales of any e-cig firm we have seen worldwide," said Brent Willis, chairman and CEO of Victory. " Their product portfolio, premium brand and distribution approaches have global potential and we intend to heavily invest in expanding their distribution model and product portfolio."
In addition to brand, product and distribution expansion opportunities, Victory will also pursue back-office, supply and other cost synergies together with London-based electronic cigarette company VAPESTICK. Victory acquired VAPESTICK in January, as CSNews Online previously reported.
"We knew that to effectively compete in the next phase of this industry we would need to partner with someone that shared our same vision and would facilitate us to achieve our long-term objectives," said VIP's Corral. "We chose Victory because they have the people, the resources and infrastructure that when combined with our team, will enable us to accomplish our vision -- now just on a global basis, and now much faster."
In addition to VIP and VAPESTICK, Spring Lake-based Victory has acquired Field's Texas Group and the FIN Branding Group in the United States within the past four months. The company expects to continue its external and organic growth activities.