22nd Century Launches Powerful Consumer Marketing Initiative

“Brand Ambassador Program” is a Direct Investment in RED SUN Smokers

CLARENCE, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- 22nd Century Group, Inc. (NYSE MKT: XXII), a leader in tobacco harm reduction technology, announced today it is launching a consumer marketing initiative in June to introduce the Company’s RED SUN super-premium cigarettes to tens of thousands of legal age smokers in select markets across the United States. Employing a nation-wide team of energetic, specially-trained RED SUN Brand Ambassadors, the Company will convey to consumers the fiercely independent, unapologetic attitude central to the RED SUN experience.

The Company’s Brand Ambassadors will offer special in-store gift certificates to smokers of Marlboro®, Camel® and Natural American Spirit® to afford them the opportunity to try RED SUN’s extraordinary bold taste. RED SUN Brand Ambassadors will work closely with owners and managers of independent smoke shops and tobacconists to tell the RED SUN story and to bring this authentic, full-bodied cigarette directly to smokers.

“We have learned that once a smoker is introduced to RED SUN – once he or she understands the brand and has had an opportunity to experience RED SUN’s robust flavor – more often than not, the smoker becomes a loyal customer… and a valuable advocate of our novel brand,” explained Henry Sicignano III, President and Chief Executive Officer at 22nd Century. “By investing directly in RED SUN smokers, 22nd Century is building a solid foundation of knowledgeable consumer ambassadors for our one-of-a-kind super-premium brand.”

22nd Century has invited dozens of retail smoke shops and tobacconists in the key metropolitan areas of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver, Portland, Seattle, and Nashville to be the first to experience exciting all-day RED SUN promotional events. Concentrating the RED SUN Brand Ambassador program in these and other strategically significant regions will provide the Company with important sales of RED SUN cigarettes in opinion-leading markets. The initial boost of the Brand Ambassador Program is expected to produce ratable near-term sales, while also accelerating organic growth beyond this summer’s campaign.

Through the RED SUN Brand Ambassador Program, the RED SUN Trade Partners Program, and other ongoing marketing efforts, 22nd Century intends to build a loyal, growing base of RED SUN smokers. By employing organic marketing efforts and information-based consumer advertising, the Company will increase awareness of both RED SUN and of 22nd Century Group more broadly. In all these endeavors, the Company will showcase (i) 22nd Century’s super-premium products and specialized manufacturing capacity, (ii) the Company’s industry-leading intellectual property which gives 22nd Century a virtual monopoly on the genes in the tobacco plant responsible for nicotine production, and (iii) 22nd Century’s very important mission of reducing the harm caused by smoking – worldwide.

About 22nd Century Group, Inc.

22nd Century Group is a plant biotechnology company focused on technology which allows it to increase or decrease the level of nicotine in tobacco plants through genetic engineering and plant breeding. The Company’s mission is to reduce the harm caused by smoking. 22nd Century owns or exclusively controls 128 issued patents and 52 pending patent applications in 96 countries. The Company’s strong IP position led to a licensing agreement with British American Tobacco (“BAT”), the world’s second largest tobacco company. Visit www.xxiicentury.com for more information.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements: This press release contains forward-looking information, including all statements that are not statements of historical fact regarding the intent, belief or current expectations of 22nd Century Group, Inc., its directors or its officers with respect to the contents of this press release. The words “may,” “would,” “will,” “expect,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “intend” and similar expressions and variations thereof are intended to identify forward-looking statements. We cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity or performance. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date that they were made. These cautionary statements should be considered with any written or oral forward-looking statements that we may issue in the future. Except as required by applicable law, including the securities laws of the United States, we do not intend to update any of the forward-looking statements to conform these statements to reflect actual results, later events or circumstances, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. You should carefully review and consider the various disclosures made by us in our annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014, filed on February 6, 2015, including the section entitled “Risk Factors,” and our other reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission which attempt to advise interested parties of the risks and factors that may affect our business, financial condition, results of operation and cash flows. If one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or if the underlying assumptions prove incorrect, our actual results may vary materially from those expected or projected.

Investor Relations:
IRTH Communications
Andrew Haag, 866-976-4784
Redington, Inc.
Tom Redington, 203-222-7399

Source: 22nd Century Group, Inc.