VAPO Opens In Ponsonby Following Tougher Restrictions


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110 points

Monday, 14 December 2020, 2:36 pm

Press Release: VAPO

The largest Kiwi-owned vape company has opened another
store – this time in Auckland’s Ponsonby and just one
month after tougher restrictions on vaping took
effect.

VAPO’s 16th specialist store opened today on
132 Ponsonby Road, following two other stores opening in
Queenstown and Pukekohe last month. After Christmas, VAPO
will also open on Dunedin’s main street at 352 George
Street.

VAPO and Alt New Zealand co-owners, Ben Pryor
and Jonathan Devery, say the dedicated stores are critical
to the country becoming smokefree and are a consequence of
the tougher vaping regulations brought in by the Government
this year.

“In short, our new specialist vape stores
will help keep many Kiwis off cigarettes given the likes of
dairies face heavy restrictions on vape flavours from next
year,” says Mr Devery.

The latest Ponsonby store
also highlights the rapid growth of VAPO which is now one of
the biggest vape brands in Australasia. The Auckland-based
entrepreneurs only opened their first store in Dominion Road
in 2017.

“We’re delighted to have secured this
site on Auckland’s iconic Ponsonby Road – just a stone’s
throw from the popular Ponsonby Central. We’re also
thrilled to be employing four people. It’s a great team,
and Black Interiors have done another smart fitout which
nicely sits in with Ponsonby’s aspirational look and
feel.

“VAPO’s arrival will help a lot of locals
quit deadly cigarettes and that’s really exciting for us.
We also want to assure people that VAPO stores enforce a
strict R18 policy which includes asking for identification
from all customers who look under 25 years of age,” he
says.

VAPO’s retail policy also means the store only
sells vape products to smokers wanting to quit tobacco and
existing vapers.

The Ponsonby store is VAPO’s third
one to open since Parliament passed the Smokefree
Environments and Regulated Products (Vaping) Amendment Act
2020 in August.

Since 11 November, vaping products
cannot be advertised, and no vaping is permitted in
workplaces. VAPO’s Ponsonby store will be running opening
promotions, but due to marketing restrictions now in place
all lips are sealed.

From 11 August 2021, general
retailers such as supermarkets, service stations and dairies
can only sell three vape flavours: Menthol, mint and
tobacco. Whereas those that register and qualify as
specialist vape stores, including VAPO’s new stores, can
continue to sell a wide range of popular
flavours.

“Under the new legislation, Auckland and
Dunedin vapers were set to lose considerable access to many
flavours from next year as general retailers will only be
allowed to sell three. However, VAPO’s arrival means local
vapers will retain great access to their favourite flavours
which research shows is absolutely critical to keeping
people off smoking,” says Mr Devery.

The vape
entrepreneur says growing VAPO’s retail offering
positively contributes to Smokefree 2025 and keeping New
Zealand’s smoking rates down – currently at about 12.5%
nationwide.

“By sustainably growing the number of
VAPO stores, we’re hoping to encourage even more Kiwi
smokers to make the switch. Our online store continues to
see good growth, but a ‘bricks and mortar’ retail
presence remains really important to ex-smokers,” he
says.

As with the other VAPO stores, Ponsonby and
Dunedin customers can responsibly dispose of their
e-cigarette waste in-store

In a unique partnership
with TerraCycle, VAPO encourages vapers to recycle their
devices and pods by dropping them off at a VAPO store.
Alternatively, e-cigarette waste can be sent free through
the post by participants signing up to a programme on
Terracycle’s website.

For every kilogramme of vaping
waste sent to TerraCycle, VAPO and Alt donates $1 to the
charity Sustainable Coastlines – which works to keep New
Zealand’s coastlines beautiful.

VAPO stores
nationwide are also located in Auckland’s NorthWest
Shopping Centre, Sylvia Park, Manukau Westfield, Dominion
Road, Onehunga, Karangahape Road, High Street CBD, Takapuna,
New Lynn, Pukekohe, as well as Hamilton East, Wellington’s
Cuba Street, Hardy Street in Nelson, High Street in
Christchurch, and Ballarat Street in Queenstown.

After
considerable local demand and requests, VAPO will open its
352 George Street store – next to AS Colour – in Dunedin
later this month. To be managed by Malcolm Lee, the Dunedin
store will be VAPO’s 17th in New Zealand, employing four
locals.

www.vapo.co.nz

© Scoop Media


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