Lambert & Butler
|Produced by||Imperial Brands|
|Registered as a trademark in||22nd of July 2014|
They eventually started selling cigarettes which were being manufactured by John Wood & Son before Lambert & Butler started manufacturing it themselves in 1876 before merging with Imperial Tobacco in 1901. In the late-1800s, it accounted for 20% of total sales value and controlled a large piece of the market with an 1870 capital of £87,200 and 1887 total capital of £175,000, alongside major companies W.D. & H.O. Wills (now Imperial Tobacco) Cope Bros & Co, Hignett Tobacco, John Player & Sons and Stephen Mitchell & Son. In this time, the first largest company in the industry was Wills followed by Cope with Lambert & Butler a strong third and one of Lambert & Butler's most popular brands was Best Bird's Eye.
In 1903, after merging with Imperial, an executive committee was formed with one of the members being Charles Lambert. Lambert & Butler also exported to Jamaica with brands Trumpeter and Needle Point. It established its own bonded warehouse in 1891 and was located on Bucknall Street near Long Acre in Westminster, London. Charles Lambert, who was called "the best judge of a Havana cigar" also ran a tobacco shop on Drury Lane. Lambert & Butler was also part of the "big six", with Wills, Taddy & Co, Cope Bros, Hignett Bros and John Player & Sons.
Taking advantage of the rise popularity of football cards in the 1920s and 1930s, Lambert & Butler released a set of association football trading cards in 1931. It consisted of a series of painted portraits that included West Ham's star centre-forward, Vic Watson. Neverless, the outbreak of the World War II forced tobacco companies to cease production of cigarette cards.
The brand was relaunched in 1979 after an absence. In the late-1990s, their campaign was a distinguished Lambert with his calm butler, Butler, exchanging humorous quotes until the last one which had their faces blurred and the butler saying "It seems we've been outlawed, Sir". In 1999, Lambert & Butler owned 17% of the British cigarette market, 5% more than Benson & Hedges. Due to Imperial Tobacco not owning the trademark on the original name, Lambert & Butler is known in some countries as either L&B or Great & British. It is among the popular and less expensive local brands and, as of 2007, Lambert & Butler King Size were the best-selling brand of cigarettes in the UK.
In 2010, the Lambert & Butler brand got officially trademarked under the following words: "L&B LAMBERT & BUTLER ORIGINAL". The brand appealed a file for registration on 17 July 2013 and got officially registered on the 22 July 2014.
In 2015, Van McCann of the British band Catfish and the Bottlemen commented Lambert & Butler was his primary tobacco brand and the one thing he can't live without on tour, saying "...this will always be my brand, that’s me feet on the ground. If I start smoking another cigarette I’ve given the lads permission to kick me out". Entertainer Paul O'Grady also commented, saying "Without a doubt my best ciggie is the Lambert & Butler that gets me out of bed every day. I take that first drag, my eyes cross, the blood pressure rises to 2,000 and it's lovely. Some people reach for a bottle; with me, it's cigarettes, I use them like a dummy".
In 2016, the last factory that still produced cigarettes in Nottingham, United Kingdom which also produced Lambert & Butler cigarettes, closed its doors for the final time. Imperial Tobacco moved the production to either Poland or Germany, which would increase their profits to £320,000,000.
Lambert & Butler cigarettes are sold in silver full strength, silver superkings, gold (formerly lights) and menthol. "Glide Tec" Packs are also now for sale and fast becoming the standard pack for this brand. These packs have a small window on the front of the pack which allows the user to slide up the inner pack with their thumb. This lifts the lid of the outer pack, and the inner pack containing the cigarettes slides out to reveal the cigarettes. Glide Tec packs are available in the silver, gold and menthol king size variants. In 2002, following a European Union ban on descriptive labels on tobacco, Lambert & Butler renamed its Lights band to Gold and its Ultra Lights to Blue.
In April 2012, Lambert & Butler Fresh Burst and Lambert & Butler Profile were added to the range. Lambert and Butler Fresh Burst cigarettes contain a capsule within the filter-tip, which when squeezed, pops and mentholates the cigarette. Lambert and Butler Profile Cigarettes are thinner in diameter, targeted at the busy smoker, who desires a cigarette which provides the same nicotine level as a standard size cigarette but in a smaller package, making the cigarette quicker to smoke. Fresh Burst and Profile are available in price marked or standard 20 packs.
In February 2014, Imperial Tobacco announced they would expand their Lambert & Butler range with a new variant called L&B Blue. It would be available from the 3rd of March 2014 onwards.
In May 2015, a survey concluded that Lambert & Butler Kingsize was the most popular variant in the range in 2013 and 2014, followed by Lambert & Butler Gold, Lambert & Butler Menthol and Lamber & Butler White.
In May 2016, it was announced that Imperial Tobacco would launch limited edition "Lambert & Butler says ‘Hi’" packs. Both Lambert & Butler and L&B Blue were available from June onwards for a limited time. Imperial Tobacco Brand Manager Madeleine Pearce says: "One in four packs sold in the premium sector today is Lambert & Butler Silver, while L&B Blue’s total market share has catapulted to almost 4% since its 2014 launch. Lambert & Butler is an iconic British cigarette, and these limited edition ‘Hi’ packs celebrate both the class and heritage of L&B Silver plus the sassiness of L&B Blue. Retailers looking to increase their sales should ensure they stock up on both these profit-driving tobacco brands while the offer lasts".
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