E-cigarette manufacturer blu Cigs to significantly expand retail channels heading into 2012, has gone from selling only online to making its products available at more than 10,000 retail locations in the U.S. in the past four months

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina , December 19, 2011 (press release) – After a record-setting year of sales and industry-first product innovations, e-cigarette market leader blu Cigs is raising the bar once again, on track to significantly expand its retail channels heading into 2012. In the past four months alone, blu has gone from selling solely online to making its products available at over 10,000 retail locations nationwide - from Sheetz, H.E.B., and Meijer, at bars and independent stores, and major drugstore chains across the country.

Since its launch only three years ago, the blu brand has distinguished itself from the rash of new start-ups in the e-cig space, becoming the standard by which consumers and retailers measure product quality and consumer satisfaction. Still the only e-cig company whose ingredients are 100% made in the USA, blu set a new standard for e-cigs in 2011, with the launch of its Smart Pack – which capitalized on the social aspect of smoking and the general public's open and widespread adoption of social media as the new norm of communication. While e-cig users and press continue to buzz about the Smart Pack, demand has steadily grown for blu's flagship products including its rechargeable starter packs, cartridges in varying flavors and levels of nicotine, and disposable e-cigs. As a result, online sales are up 70% from last year, demonstrating that more consumers choose blu.

"It's exciting to see such great brand recognition, and we are responding to that growing demand by offering even more purchasing options for both our new, and longtime customers," commented Jason Healy, President of blu Cigs. "At the same time, as the only company using USA-made smoke juice, we have always been diligent about the quality of our product, so we are incredibly selective about the retailers we choose – ensuring they adhere to the same standards of quality, customer support and satisfaction so integral to our brand."

blu's skyrocketing nationwide brand recognition is no accident or anomaly, and is a direct result of a full advertising and promotional portfolio across TV, print, and online media – including USA Today, OK! Magazine, Esquire, Maxim, and more – not to mention high profile events such as the MTV Music Awards and Country Music Awards. blu has been featured by The New York Times and FastCompany, as well as WIRED, TechCrunch, FOX and NBC News. 2012 will see blu continuing to expand its presence throughout national mainstream media and events to further connect with, inform, and grow its customer base.

Retailers, from pharmacies and grocers to convenience stores, have shown heightened interest in working with blu, based on its brand recognition and product quality, as much as the company's commitment to driving consumers to retail sales locations. In fact, blu's store locator – created to help transition more than 350,000 faithful customers from online to retail sales – sees over 9,000 visits per day. This, along with blu's attractive Point-of-Sale (POS) displays, has helped lead another 6,000 retail locations to commit to carrying blu Cigs' array of products in January 2012, with expanded international shipping soon to follow. For more information on retail locations carrying blu, or to purchase online, visit www.blucigs.com.

About blu Cigs
blu Cigs is the innovator of electronic cigarettes in the U.S., offering an alternative to smoking. blu's high-tech "e-cigs" look and feel just like traditional cigarettes – without the smoke, smell, tar and ash. blu Cigs are battery-operated – creating a smoke-free vapor "puff" that evaporates within seconds. blu Cigs are available in convenient disposables or rechargeable packs for continuous daily use, with or without nicotine and in a variety of flavors. blu Cigs have been featured in the presenter gift bags at the Grammy Awards and other celebrity events, and are used by a number of A-list actors, musicians, and athletes. Based in Charlotte, NC – at the heart of tobacco road – blu Cigs is the only e-cigarette provider whose ingestible contents are 100% made in the USA. For more, visit www.blucigs.com.

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