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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 2)

Levin: I came into the business in 1972.

CA: How big a store was Harry A. Tint in terms of revenue?

Levin: At one time they were the strongest cigar merchants in Philadelphia. They had all the name brands, especially the Cuban brands. They were directly importing them before the embargo. But when we bought the business, their business had really declined quite a bit. They were only doing about $250,000.

CA: What did you pay for that store?

Levin: Not much. We paid between $50,000 and $100,000.

CA: Did you merge the two operations?

Levin: Yes, we took their whole operation and moved it into our store. They had lost their lease anyway. And when we bought the business, the Tint brothers, they're twins, were already ready to retire.

CA: Let's go back. You entered the business in 1972. How old were you then?

Levin: I was in my mid-20s.

CA: Think back to 1971, before you came into the family business. What was your perception of the cigar business when you first started working there on a full-time basis?

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