Juul to cut 650 jobs, or 16% of its workforce, slash $1 billion in costs

Juul will cut 650 jobs, up from the previously planned 500 jobs, as it slashes nearly $1 billion in costs next year, a company official said Tuesday.

The job cuts represent 16% of Juul’s 4,051 employees. The fast-growing start-up had been hiring about 300 employees a month.

Juul will cut marketing spending as the company halts all product advertising in the U.S., a move the company announced in September. The remaining team will focus on direct advertising to smokers, the Juul official said Tuesday.

“As the vapor category undergoes a necessary reset, this reorganization will help JUUL Labs focus on reducing underage use, investing in scientific research, and creating new technologies while earning a license to operate in the U.S. and around the world,” Juul’s new CEO K.C. Crosthwaite said.

Juul is trying to overhaul its image from a company that’s largely blamed with fueling a teen vaping epidemic. The company in September replaced CEO Kevin Burns with longtime tobacco executive Crosthwaite.

Crosthwaite previously worked at Altria, the tobacco company that took a 35% stake in Juul late last year. Since joining Juul, he has shaken up management and led the cuts.

He is trying to position Juul as a responsible company. Last week, Juul said it would halt sales of its mint-flavored nicotine pods, which were shown to be the most popular flavor among high school students in two studies.

Juul also removed its other sweet flavors from its website, nearly a year after it pulled the flavors from convenience stores, vape shops and other retailers.

The Trump administration in September announced it was readying a ban on flavored e-cigarettes. Juul and all other e-cigarette companies must submit applications to keep their products on the market to the Food and Drug Administration by May 2020.


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