Edgar Cullman Jr.
CEO, General Cigar Company
Marvin R. Shanken
From the Print Edition:
Demi Moore, Autumn 96
(continued from page 5)
Cullman: Well, we've hit a completely new high for Macanudo. We reached a peak in 1986, and declined from then until about 1993. But Marvin, it is our policy not to talk about specific unit sales for our brands, so I can't give an exact number.
CA: But Macanudo has not only responded to market demand, you've also increased the number of sizes, as well as moved up the price to reflect increased cost, market demand and the aging of tobacco inventory.
Cullman: Well, we have introduced new sizes. I am smoking a Hyde Park, as an example. That's a new size to the Macanudo line. It was a response to consumer interest in heavier gauge cigars. Our best-selling cigar today is the Baron de Rothschild, but it's very rapidly being overcome by the Prince Philip, which is a much heavier gauge cigar. In any case, we have added sizes, we have subtracted sizes. During this incredible surge in the cigar business, we've actually taken sizes off and discontinued them so we can concentrate on the sizes that have the most interest from consumers. We have also, as you know, added the vintage line and this summer we'll be introducing a whole new look on the vintage line at the RTDA [Retail Tobacco Dealers of America] convention.
CA: Will you tell us about that?
Cullman: The concept is that we will be producing a limited number of four vintages: 1978, 1984, 1988, and then we'll be introducing a new vintage with 1993. And we'll be sending them out as a package.
CA: How many cigars in the package?
Cullman: The cigars will be packaged by vintage and in one size only. But the retailer can buy a package of four different vintages for sale in their store.
CA: What kind of production will you have on this new line?
Cullman: It's not huge, but it's still a couple of million cigars in all, including the 1993.
CA: Where were you able to get tobacco for that?
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