Booker Cash & Carry is launching the St James cigarette brand in packets of 14.
The brand will be available in more than 50,000 independent outlets. It will comple ment Booker’s existing Gold Mark range, but target a younger market.
Research shows that the 14-pack avoids the social stigma of a ten-pack – which suggests the smoker cannot afford a pack of 20 – but it is still attractive to people trying to cut down.
The company denies the packets are a gimmick. It will launch the brand through an initial 500,000 press campaign by Ware Anthony Rust.
Rothmans Royals became the first odd-numbered cigarette packs – with 25 – when they were launched in 1992. A 12-pack version was launched last year.
“There is still a social stigma attached to tens, and 14s are useful for people trying to moderate their smoking,” claims Robert Ware, chairman of Ware Anthony West. “There has been independent research, this is not a stunt.”