E-Cigarette Sales to Hit $1 Billion

Five years from now, he thinks, 30 to 40 percent of traditional smokers will have switched to e-cigarettes—perhaps as many as 20 million customers. In five years e-cigarette sales will grow to $15 billion to $20 billion a year, he thinks.

As for what further restrictions might be coming down the pike, Alelov says he's not particularly worried about any regulations the FDA may eventually promulgate. (The FDA currently does not regulate e-cigarettes, but it is expected to in the future.) He expects the FDA's regulations, when they come, would apply to packaging, labeling, and minimum age of the buyer.

Alelov says there are some venues where he, personally, won't smoke an e-cigarette. They include McDonalds, movie theaters and children's playgrounds. Everywhere else, however — everywhere that nicotine gum or nicotine patches are permitted — he feels e-smokes should be, too.

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