(Bloomberg) -- Juul Labs Inc. is working with bankers at Centerview Partners to help raise financing as it faces consumer lawsuits and an attempt by federal regulators to ban its e-cigarettes from the US market, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Juul also is getting litigation and restructuring advice from Kirkland & Ellis and Alvarez & Marsal, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak. The company is weighing options including a potential bankruptcy filing, which could change depending on the outcome of its appeal of the Food and Drug Administration’s ban on Juul’s vaping products and other factors, the people said.
Juul is facing hundreds of millions of dollars in damages from a barrage of lawsuits alleging the company targeted minors. The FDA banned Juul’s products on June 23, citing a lack of evidence demonstrating the overall safety of the company’s products. The agency also noted Juul’s “disproportionate role in the rise in youth vaping.” The FDA suspended its ban Tuesday, pending further scientific review.
Related: Juul Continues Selling Vaping Products After FDA Stays Ban
“As we continue to operate in the market and go through the FDA’s appeals process, we are in the early stages of exploring a variety of options including various potential financing alternatives to protect our business and to address the impact of the FDA’s now stayed order,” Juul said a statement.
Representatives at Centerview Partners, Kirkland & Ellis, and Alvarez & Marsal didn’t respond to requests seeking comment. The Wall Street Journal earlier reported that Juul has been working with Kirkland & Ellis on options that include a possible bankruptcy filing.
Altria Group Inc., which owns a 35% stake in Juul and is a defendant in the youth marketing litigation, has argued that the harm caused to young vapers occurred before its investment in Juul. Altria’s shares fell 1.5% to $41.10 on Wednesday.
©2022 Bloomberg L.P.