What are the main priorities of VOOPOO and ZOVOO companies, is it possible to repeat the success of the DRAG line of electronic cigarettes now, and what awaits the vaping industry in the future? The editors talked about all this in detail with Alexander Xu Sanzhi(Александром Сюй Саньчжи), CEO of ZOVOO VOOPOO RUSSIA, at the last JohnCalliano El Festivale exhibition.
In 2017, you released your debut product, the DRAG 157W box mod. Did you expect such success?
Yes. In fact, even before the release of the device, our team devoted themselves to the development of a box mod with an increased heating rate for a whole year. Then, based on the results of numerous marketing studies, we believed that the low heating rate of the evaporator was a problem for many consumers. From the very beginning , VOPOO set a goal for itself – to solve this problem.
All our achievements, which we are proud of, have become possible due to thorough research and systematic monitoring of the market in this segment, deep study of technological solutions, commitment to the idea of becoming leaders and innovators, striving to develop user-friendly products, we sincerely want to create high-quality products for users around the world.
Persistence in work over a long period of time will definitely bring success. These are the ideals that VOOPOO’s parent company has held to since its founding in 2014.
How difficult is it to replicate the success of a pilot project now?
At present, China has the largest number of manufacturing enterprises producing electronic cigarettes. The electronic cigarette industry is quite developed, many companies have founded their brands for the production of vaporizers. Especially since the second half of 2019, the e-cigarette market continues to develop: large and small entrepreneurs and investors emerge one after another, and the competition is getting tougher. So repeating the success of DRAG will be a little more difficult than in 2017.
However, now there are many brands that enter the OEM market (Original Equipment Manufacture – contract manufacturing of products that already exist under your brand name), and the underlying technology and patents belong to the ODM manufacturer (contract manufacturing of unique products). Such methods will definitely help reduce the cost of building a brand, but this also greatly reduces the barrier to entry into the industry. Small brands don’t have the advantage of core technology, quality, product safety, and consumer confidence because new brands often don’t have a story to tell. In the long term, the more influential players in the e-cigarette market will be those who develop their own technologies. VOOPOO recognized this problem early enough and invests a lot in technology research and development, closely dealing with the issue of creating and improving evaporators. We believe that perseverance leads to success.
What inspires brand designers? Where do they get ideas?
The slogan of the VOOPOO brand is Spark your life (“Light up your life”), in which we put the desire to spark endless inspiration in people’s lives. It is the inspiration of the VOOPOO brand and the product design is developed based on our values, also perfectly complementing the infinity symbol (∞) in the VOOPOO logo. VOOPOO hopes not only to bring new devices to this world, but also a spirit with the idea of exploring vaping culture.
We always adhere to user-centric design and create products that people really need. VOOPOO’s design department consists of senior creative developers, concept artists, visual designers, and technical specialists. The purpose of the department is to develop products and design based on user experience, increasing the value of user experience with the brightest taste sensations and modern advanced technologies.
What challenges does the company face, from design to actual release to market?
The most difficult thing in device development and design is speeding up the introduction of new versions of devices, overcoming the technical barriers that we face when developing something new, integrating innovations in relation to audience requests. As well as checking the compliance of products with high international standards. In addition, there is increasing competition that we have to face.
Difficulties in product marketing most often arise when building work in foreign markets, in managing work processes abroad, creating cool devices in accordance with local legislation.
Quality or quantity of devices produced: what is your priority?
Quality is the priority. The parent company VOOPOO has set up a state-of-the-art production center, with 100,000 literally sterile machine tools with intelligent MES production management system, automatic production equipment and traceable quality control of the entire process. The production has passed the ISO 9001 quality control system and issued international certificates UL, FCC, CE, KC for products. It meets the requirements of GMP820 certification (GMP820 is an advanced quality management system) and supports the international level quality of the PMTA standard approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration in the United States), which fully confirms the quality of design and development, raw materials, production and manufacturing.
Why does VOOPOO rarely contact serviced atomizers? Not the hottest item?
Why? VOOPOO atomizer is one of our best selling products, and VOOPOO started to pay more attention to advertising and promotion of atomizers.
VOOPOO has three super vaporizer platforms: PNP, TPP, and ITO, through which users can change both cans and vaporizers on the same devices, achieving an amazing experience with different experiences. This helps to reduce costs for consumers and allows you to experiment by freely changing components.
The PnP PLATFORM platform provides three puff options at once: RDL, DL and MTL, allowing you to experiment with the taste and amount of vapor at any time. The PnP platform is used on all open VOOPOO systems (pods, pod mods, and mods). The concept of introducing universal PnP interoperability also helps to reduce the cost of users and meet their wide variety of vaping needs.
The TPP platform is VOOPOO’s most resonant and professional atomizer system, designed for the most powerful and vibrant vaping experience. With the unique Dual in One technology (double grid structure of the evaporator), TPP achieves efficient power and even heating of the evaporator element, resulting in rich flavor, thick layers of vapor and lower vaping temperature. The TPP platform is mainly used in professional devices such as pod mods and mods.
The ITO platform designed by VOOPOO brings the ultimate experience to MTL puff fans. The ITO platform is based on the taste needs of consumers and is applied to POD systems, providing users with the most rich and vivid taste experience. It is equipped with an innovative liquid evaporation technology, which helps to accelerate the diffusion of fragrance, and makes the heating area inside the device more uniform, and the evaporation process is smoother. High atomization efficiency promotes smoother delivery of nicotine salts and full nicotine salts for the most intense flavor.
More details can be read in detail on VOOPOO official website .
Which device from your huge range of products is the leader in sales worldwide at the moment?
As mentioned above, the DRAG series is a top seller worldwide. In addition, since this year we have begun to actively promote the ARGUS series. In fact, the ARGUS series belongs to the premium segment of the VOOPOO brand, so we believe that this year the ARGUS series will take its place in the device market.
Based on the experience of VOOPOO, what is the secret of a successful vape product?
There is no one aspect. Therefore, I believe in cutting-edge technology in research and development, progressive product design, process improvement, international quality control, and, most importantly, in a commitment to a consumer-oriented concept.
Which international brand VOOPOO considers its main competitor and why?
SMOK. There are three reasons why we consider it our main competitor:
1. It is a recognizable brand with a lot of experience. Almost every distributor knows this brand.
2. SMOK has a strong distribution channel.
3. Currently, SMOK products have the largest market share worldwide. But VOOPOO is confident that it will soon catch up with SMOK in market presence.
Why was the disposable e-cigarette company founded so late compared to the competition? Established in 2020 as a pre-filled e-cigarette brand, ZOVOO is headquartered in Shenzhen, China
. ZOVOO integrates R&D into R&D, production, design and marketing, and builds product competitiveness based on GENE TREE technology: it is nano-microcrystalline ceramic evaporator, which means liquid evaporation technology has also become our valuable advantage.
We have made significant technical preparations for 2020 and, thanks to the influence of the parent company, as well as significant offline global marketing strategy planning support, DRAGBAR reached millions of sales worldwide within half a year of release.
What liquid is used in ZOVOO brand disposable cigarettes?
At ZOVOO, the e-liquid formula is developed by the Academy of Natural Sciences, which researches and develops the latest flavors of vaping liquids, as well as new raw materials for the production of e-liquid, research on safety and toxicity, and research on the long-term effects of liquids on the human body.
The Academy has built a laboratory according to the requirements of the Chinese certification service, in accordance with the ISO17025 standard. This laboratory is responsible for the development of liquids for electronic cigarettes and monitors its quality and safety.
Can you tell us more about the innovative technologies used in your electronic cigarettes? I mean new type evaporators?
The ITO platform focuses on delivering vibrant flavor experiences. Based on consumer taste preferences, we develop e-liquids for disposable devices and provide technologies that deliver the richest taste.
The innovative liquid atomization technology carried out on the ITO platform accelerates the start of evaporation, making the heating area inside the device more uniform. Excellent atomization properties make the nicotine salt transfer process smoother, helping to break down the nicotine salt into particles and delivering a vibrant taste experience.
Our disposable devices also use a separately developed innovative Gene Tree nano-microcrystalline ceramic core technology. All liquid particles disintegrate without precipitation, significantly increasing the duration and expanding the boundaries of evaporation.
Let’s talk about the evolution of the market. What do you think will happen to the industry in the future and what will be the fate of current devices?
Vaping regulations to be standardized around the world
The number of users of regular tobacco cigarettes will gradually decrease as people want to reduce the harmful effects of tobacco products on their bodies – this is a key moment in the evolution of the tobacco industry.
Paying more attention to environmental protection.
Has the e-cigarette market reached its developmental ceiling? Since truly innovative technologies are extremely rare, is it true that everything “better / improved” has already been invented?
We don’t think so. Looking to the future with courage, VOOPOO and ZOVOO will continue to overcome the technical obstacles that limit the development of the traditional e-cigarette market. It is important for us to set goals and achieve them in the future, which, in turn, from time to time helps to achieve a breakthrough in technology, product improvement and the use of a hypothetical forecasting method.
Hypothetical forecasting studies the problems associated with the field of electronic cigarettes that people may face in the future in everyday life, at work, in the field of entertainment in terms of health or other possible scenarios. Such problems determine the future direction of technical development and prospects for the creation of new products.
In general, relying on the research and development of chips and technology, the introduction of new heating methods, the in-depth study of the atomization mechanism, combined with computer analysis, and the improvement of puff, taste and heat range control, the best atomization effect is achieved. This allows us to promote the latest versions of electronic cigarettes.
Are there any specific features/difficulties in the development of the Russian market of electronic cigarettes in comparison with other countries? And how important is this market for you compared to the overall picture of the brand’s presence around the world?
Russia is one of the fastest growing e-cigarette markets worldwide. In recent years, the demand for e-cigarettes and related products has increased significantly. Compared to the moderate growth of the US and European markets, the growth rate of the Russian market is particularly impressive. ZOVOO is aware of the importance of the Russian market, and is committed to its more thorough research and increase its share in it.
Are your social networks supervised by some agency, or does the company have Russian-speaking specialists in the Moscow office?
We are going to recruit a team of Russian-speaking professionals in Moscow who will be engaged in information support and promotion of the VOOPOO and ZOVOO brands in the Russian market.
Are you planning collaborations with other brands?
As for the brand and product promotion, in the future we will consider the possibility of international cooperation with Russian internationally recognized brands.
How is the distribution going now? Through distributors, or do you plan to work with major players in the market, as Aspire and BRUSKO do, and sell devices through a Russian brand?
Alexander, thank you for your answers!