An Interview With Robert Levin
Owner, Holt's Cigar Store, Inc., and the Ashton Brand
Marvin R. Shanken
From the Print Edition:
Danny DeVito, Winter 96
(continued from page 19)
Levin: After '97. We will be working on a few other brands, which we will promote in both the national and international markets.
CA: Will you own those other brands, and will the Fuentes produce them for you?
Levin: Hopefully. If they can expand their production in the way they always do, which is to focus on quality first. Also, we are going to have a brand from Honduras, called Castano, which we are working on now. We hope to get our first shipments in February.
CA: And who will produce that?
Levin: Villazon [makers of Hoyo de Monterrey and Punch].
CA: Will the acquisition of Villazon by General Cigar, if it happens, change your deal for the new cigar?
Levin: I hope not. Frank Llaneza is one of the most knowledgeable tobacco people around. I'm an old customer, we know each other very well, and I think that they'll honor the commitment that Frank makes.
CA: What about a ceiling for Ashton sales; do you see it leveling off at 4 1/2 million?
Levin: No, no, no, I think if I had 10 million cigars now, I could sell 10 million cigars. I'm looking for major increases every year in Ashton.
CA: Do people knock on your door to buy your brand?
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