E-Cigarette Reviews and Rankings

Spain’s E-Cigarette Bubble Bursts, over 90% of Shops Shut Down

As popular as electronic cigarettes may seem right now, they are not a full-proof investment, and the current state of event in Spain is clear proof of that. According to data published by ANCE, the latin country’s electronic cigarette association, out of the 3,000 e-cig shops opened in the last few years, 2,700 of them are now closed.

SpainSpain had never been one of the world’s leading electronic cigarette markets, but the sector was still considered one of the most promising, especially considering the country’s economic climate following the global financial crisis of 2007-2008. New e-cigarette shops opened virtually every day, and, for a while, there seemed to be room everyone in a market that showed immense potential for growth. At the peak of Spain’s e-cigarette bubble, there was roughly one e-cigarette shop per 65 square miles, and in large cities like Madrid, you could walk by two or three of these establishments within 200 meters of each other.

“There was a boom for the product here, people thought it was a magic wand for giving up smoking, and no (this wasn’t the case). It seemed like the market was infinite and there would be enough for everyone, and we can’t deny that many of our clients have gone back to normal tobacco, although nobody is going to admit it,” a surviving shop owner recently told The Local. ANCE vice president Alejandro Rodríguez also admits that the market simply grew too much too soon. Many of the shops had inexperienced staff who didn’t know what products to recommend according to their needs, while others had problems with suppliers. At the beginning of 2014, with around 3,000 electronic cigarette shops registered throughout Spain, it was clear the market had become oversaturated. Today, only around 300 of these are still operating.

But ANCE claims the unsustainable growth of the electronic cigarette market wasn’t the only cause that let to its abrupt and painful downfall. “There has been a very intense attack by pharmaceutical companies which has generated bad publicity in the media,”  Rodriguez told Spain’s El Confidencial newspaper. Although it is hard to prove that the negative media coverage of electronic cigarettes in Spain is the result of Big Pharma lobbying, there does seem to be a lot of it. Physicians and pulmonologists regularly warn the public about the addictive nature of e-cigarettes and the unknown side-effects they might have on people’s health, while conveniently leaving out scientific evidence of their harmlessness compared to tobacco cigarettes.

The perfect example of this slander campaign aimed at electronic cigarettes is the very article published in El Confidencial regarding the burst of Spain’s e-cigarette bubble. As a conclusion, the article states: “we know they are not safe products, that they are addictive because of the nicotine content and that they are not intended as smoking cessation aids.” It also mentions that much of the scientific research into electronic cigarettes is suspected of having been financed by stakeholders, which is simply not true.

With all the negativity surrounding electronic cigarettes, it’s no wonder there are just 900,000 active users in Spain, according to ANCE, a modest figure compared to the almost 5 million vapers living in the UK, for example.

Leave a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *