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La Gloria Miami

Under the aegis of new owner Swedish Match, Ernesto Perez-Carrillo will debut a special Miami version of his La Gloria Cuban
David Savona
From the Print Edition:
The Sopranos, Mar/Apr 01

(continued from page 2)

One of the ways that El Credito will get larger involves the company's relationship with a former competitor, General Cigar.

At press time, Carrillo was preparing to move his Dominican production from a free-trade zone in Pisano to Santiago, a result of the increasingly close alliance between his company and General, maker of Macanudo, among other brands. Another benefit will come when General's sales force, which is four times larger than El Credito's, begins selling El Credito's cigars.

The Swedish Match money has made its mark on Carrillo's company. He once ran the business from a dusty corner of his Miami factory. Today, he sits in a stark, spacious office in his new warehouse and headquarters, which is located a few minutes from his Calle Ocho factory.

The walls of the room are largely bare. A photograph in a frame sits in the in box, waiting to be hung on the wall. It looks as if Carrillo moved in the week before, but he's been there for months.

One memento has been installed. In a corner of his office sits an ornate wooden chair. It's just behind Carrillo, positioned so that a person seated there could peer over the shoulder of the cigarmaker.

"That was my father's chair," says Carrillo. His uncle made it in Cuba, a chair fit for a boss, and it puts everything in Carrillo's world in perfect perspective.

"That chair," says Carrillo, "goes with me wherever I go."

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