The heat’s on in Japan

    The capacity constraints that have dogged the domestic launch of Japan Tobacco Inc.’s heated tobacco device will take a while to resolve, according to story by Sam Chambers for Bloomberg News quoting a JT executive.

    The delay will hand a further boost to Philip Morris International in what was described as the world’s most advanced market for next-generation tobacco products.

    JT underestimated the level of demand for its Ploom Tech device since releasing the product in March in its home market, Yasuhiro Nakajima, vice president of emerging products, said in an interview with Chambers.

    Now, the company was spending tens of billions of yen to try to relieve the capacity constraints that were preventing it from selling Ploom Tech nationwide.

    “We are improving the Ploom Tech supply situation but to be honest it is taking some time,” Nakajima said. “I cannot tell you that we can resolve the issue very quickly.”

    PMI has taken 5.5 percent of the country’s cigarette market with its iQOS heated-tobacco product since releasing it nationwide in April.

    And British American Tobacco’s glo device is set to provide fresh competition.