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Great update Devin!

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Thanks for reading, StockOpine

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Apr 24, 2023Liked by Devin LaSarre

Excellent analysis as always.

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Thank you, Varago. I appreciate it!

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Informative, well researched, and balanced writeup. I’m a lot more bullish on iQOS in the US, but maybe that’s because I’ve seen how ubiquitous it has become in parts of Europe.

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You're too kind! I'm bullish overall on IQOS - I simply want to try to remain as conservative as possible in how I'm approaching valuing the business. IQOS has surely been a radical success in Europe. If anything close to that is replicated in the U.S., a very different story will emerge.

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I appreciate your conservative approach. I’m kinda seeing this as a stealth growth stock. Love that expectations for it are so low.

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I think that general framing is right. Superior margin profile, capital intensity, and ROCE than most of the market, yet still priced lower. Idiosyncratic risks weighed vs. unique advantages, and most market participants uninterested

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Nice writeup man!

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Thanks, Six Bravo. It's a story that keeps going and going

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May 15, 2023·edited May 15, 2023Liked by Devin LaSarre

Just some thoughts/questions... How confident are you in PM's due diligence in buying Swedish Match? What are the chances they've bought into a 'Juul-esq' scenario and in a years time, ZYN will be dead in America? Being #1 in the market, ZYN is going to take a lot of heat, are we sure management is up to the task to correctly market/defend this product (Altria proved they couldn't)?

Would appreciate your take.

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Great questions, William. I think SWMA looks quite different than something like JUUL. First off, underage usage of pouches is far lower than vaping, and SWMA has not had an issue on that front. Secondly, it's a controlling interest, allowing PMI to continue to operate as responsibly as possible. Quite different from Altria's JUUL investment, which was a minority stake, which made things difficult for them and more opaque for investors. I think it's nearly impossible for ZYN to retain such a staggering % of category share. Same is actually true for IQOS. However, both categories are continuing to grow so steadily, you can still reach a very positive outcome. With regards to ZYN specifically, there seems to be some building of brand equity/affinity for the product from a consumer level. It continues to grow and maintain share despite being priced above aggressively discounted competing products. WIth that said, there is some risk regarding new competition. While neither has PMTA approval, in a few years time we will see both on! PLUS and the European version of Velo attempt to enter the U.S. I believe they both stack up to be incredibly strong products vs. ZYN. At the same time, PMI has ample distribution and sales globally to help grow ZYN in other markets where the category has little/no presence. I remain positive.

Thanks for the great questions.

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May 15, 2023Liked by Devin LaSarre

Thank you for the insight, Devin! (FYI - long PM)

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