BAT-shows-positive-impact-of-switching-to-THPs
Kim Eun-Ji, country manager at BAT Rothmans, speaks during a press conference designed to share a clinical study on tobacco harm reduction of glo™ and demonstrate its global corporate strategy of building “A Better Tomorrow” at Westin Chosun Hotel in downtown Seoul on Oct. 11. Photo courtesy of BAT Rothmans

One-year clinical study results published in a medical journal

Health-sensitive smokers have defected to alternative products, including e-cigarettes or heated tobacco products (HTPs). But they have been uncertain about how much such new products reduce harm.

At this climate, BAT has come up with the results of a one-year clinical study on tobacco harm reduction of its flagship HTP, dubbed ‘glo™,’ which was recently published by the peer-reviewed medical journal “Internal and Emergency Medicine.”

Its conclusion: Although glo™ is not risk-free and nicotine is addictive, the aerosol contains 90-95 percent less toxicants compared to conventional cigarette smoke.

BAT Rothmans shared the results on Oct. 11 during a press conference in Seoul, saying that smokers switching exclusively to glo™ had demonstrated statistically significant changes.

Compared to smokers who continued to light traditional cigarettes, BAT noted that the new users of glo™ achieved significant and sustained improvements in several indicators of potential harm associated with early disease development.

Included in the indicators were those for lung disease, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Some improvements were even comparable to stopping smoking completely, according to BAT.

“These study results are the most important data we have ever generated about glo™ and for the tobacco heating category. This real-world study allows us to assess the changes that adult smokers switching exclusively to glo™ experience, by assessing early indicators of potential harm associated with disease development,” said Sharon Goodall, BAT’s chief of Regulatory Science.

“It provides much-needed new evidence about the size of the change and durability of the effect switching completely to glo™ can have and reinforces glo™’s potential as a reduced-risk product.”

The test involved more than 500 U.K.-based adult smokers in good health located in four cities and aged between 23 and 55.

Goodall added that the study based on up to 300 chemical and biological tests would be a very important milestone in the outfit’s journey to building “A Better Tomorrow,” the corporate goal of the multinational company.

Unique corporate strategy of H-ESG

BAT disclosed the “A Better Tomorrow” target in early 2020 to focus on reducing the health impact of its business through its multi-category portfolio of new products with less risky alternatives.

The company also published its ambition to achieve 50 million consumers using its non-combustible products during the third decade of the new millennium.

In line with this strategy, BAT said the number of consumers of its non-combustible products reached 20.4 million as of the first half of 2022, with a nearly 2.5 times increase from 8 million in 2018. 

Against this backdrop, Kim Eun-Ji, country manager at BAT Rothmans, showed the firm’s commitment to shaping its business in Korea more firmly and shared its achievements so far in the so-called “H-ESG” agenda.  

H-ESG is BAT’s unique sustainability agenda, with a primary focus on reducing the Health impact of its business (H) with its reduced-risk products, underpinned by the ESG.

Brief for Environmental, Social, and corporate Governance, ESG is the three central factors in measuring the sustainability of a corporation or business.

Over the past few years, the initiative has won the hearts and minds of businesspeople as an essential managerial value locally and globally.

BAT is trying to move a step forward by adding the fourth factor of H on top of the ESG principles.

“In Korea, glo™’s market share in the local THP market, which was only 5.53 percent in 2019, has risen to about 12 percent as of June this year, rising by an average of more than 30 percent every year,” Kim told the media event.

“It has more than doubled in growth over the past year. We’re on track to reach 50 million consumers of our non-combustible products glo™, and furthermore, we will continue to make an active effort to deliver positive impacts to all our stakeholders in Korea, including our consumers, employees, and society.”

Kim commented that BAT Rothmans had been pushing various initiatives under its H-ESG pillars, namely divided into two broad categories of creating: “Clean Tomorrow” and “Tomorrow’s Korean.”

In particular, BAT Rothmans has carried out various projects, including eco-friendly efforts at its Sacheon factory, situated some 350 kilometers south of Seoul, Kim said.

“BAT operates a world-class manufacturing factory in Sacheon, Korea, and is contributing to the national and regional economy through continuous export and job creation,” she said.

“Now that corporate social responsibility is more important than ever, BAT Rothmans will continue to actively implement an H-ESG strategy in Korea to maintain the sustainability of our business while building ‘A Better Tomorrow’ for all our stakeholders.”

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The publisher studied Korean history in Seoul and management of business administration in the United Kingdom. He has 20-year experiences in the media business. Kim can be reached at voc200@gmail.com or 82-2-6956-6698.