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Beyond Tech, Watch Your Regulatory Risk

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This is a big lesson that besides technology, regulatory risk is super important as you explore to invest in emerging companies and startups. Altria Group just burnt $4.5 billion within a year for blindly thinking that humans will welcome e-cigarettes in the 21st century. Of course, when a tobacco company is vaping billions of dollars, you would expect they fold for good, but they will not go away because bad habits deliver high margins!

Facing increasing scrutiny from international and domestic regulators, the Altria Group has decided to write down its investment into the e-cigarette company Juul by $4.5 billion.

That’s roughly one-third of the $12.8 billion that the tobacco giant had invested into Juul a little less than one year ago.