Vapouround magazine Special Issue 01 - Page 85

F E AT U R E him from a career in Naval Aviation and Luke settled instead for a rewarding career as an intelligence officer which saw him stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, from 2011-2014. It was in Hawaii that he noticed a lot of military guys using e-cigs as a replacement for cigarettes so he tried them himself, kicked his 10 year smoking habit and has not smoked a regular cigarette since converting to vaping. In 2013 he opened his first vape store in Iowa, Hawkeye Vapor, while still serving in the Navy but soon selling other people’s products was not enough. He said: “After receiving multiple e-liquid samples from companies throughout my time owning Hawkeye Vapor Lounge, I realized that there were multiple companies that didn't have great branding, and the e-liquid wasn't the best. “I thought that I could provide the vaping industry a better quality product, with branding that people could relate to in the industry so I came up with the idea of a militarized, aviationtype e-liquid brand and Nighthawk Eliquid was the result. “Owning the vape shop and being on the retail side for a couple of years, I saw what sells. I saw what flavors sell really well, so that was a good kind of inside knowledge as a base for our flavor profiles.” Luke said the two key things he had to get right was the flavor profiles for his eliquids (he didn’t simply want to copy what everyone else was doing) and getting the branding just right. He explained: “On the branding side, our branding has a fighter pilot-type military logo, and I think that best describes my background. I think that it can relate. Military guys can relate to it. People that go to air shows just to go see the Blue Angels, they can relate to it. It's really edgy. I don't think anybody in the industry has a military-geared brand e-liquid company.” Luke now plans to visit all the major conventions in a bid to increase the amount of international vape shops that carry the Nighthawk Eliquid range. For more information visit http:// VAPOUROUND MAGAZINE USA 79