Republic Technologies, the filters, papers and smoking accessories specialist, is unveiling a rolling programme of headline brand support that will enable retailers to capitalise on growing consumer demand for its leading Swan and Zig-Zag brands.

“Both Swan and Zig-Zag will be backed by sustained investment throughout 2013, at a time when the roll your own sector is the star performer of the UK’s tobacco market,” says Eleni Koulara, Marketing Manager of Republic Technologies Limited.

This year is the 130th anniversary of  Swan, Britain’s Favourite Filter, which will benefit from a major NPD programme, commemorative limited editions and the brand’s biggest ever on-pack promotion.

Zig-Zag will also receive sustained marketing support as Republic Technologies focuses on achieving the brand’s huge growth potential.

In addition to nationwide sampling and press advertising, Zig-Zag will receive huge levels of exposure as an official partner of Premier League Darts, Britain’s biggest indoor sporting event, and this year’s World Darts Championship.

Last year the RYO market grew in value by +15.1%* (MAT TY), significantly outperforming the tobacco market, offering retailers a clear opportunity to maximise profits at a time when many cigarette brands are facing declining sales.

Demand for filter tips is also rising significantly. The market-leading Swan range is the best-performing and fastest-growing brand in the £61 million* sector, increasing in value by +15.4%* (MAT) and accounting for over 90%* of the filter tips market.

Eleni Koulara is clear as to how retailers can maximise the growing demand for RYO accessories.

“The key is to stock major growth lines such as multi-packs and combi-packs. These provide smokers with the choice and premium quality they’re seeking at affordable prices. In particular, combi-packs have grown by 19.6%** in 2012 (versus 2011) in the impulse market,” she says.

With regard to stocking, Koulara says retailers should use the iconic Swan brand to signpost the category. The side of the gantry is the best location for RYO accessories as the more visible they are, the greater the sales.

“Smokers are also looking for brands they know and trust and if their preferred choice isn’t available, they’re likely to buy elsewhere,” adds Koulara.

With that in mind, retailers are being urged to look beyond the key volume drivers. A good example is menthol filter tips, which now account for one in ten of all filter tips sold, and combi-packs which are likely to be bought by 7 out of 10 smokers***, if stocked.

Meanwhile, lighters and matches continue to perform well, with the £69 million* lighters market up 3.3%* in value and the £13 million* matches market up 10.3%*, boosting profits from the tobacco accessories fixture.

* Nielsen MAT to December 2012

** Nielsen September 2012 MAT Market Track

*** Independent study, 2011

Republic Technologies UK

Trade Enquiries: 01494 556279

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