After seven years with Rocky Patel Premium Cigars, Hamlet Paredes has left the company to work as a consultant in the industry.
Paredes started as a cigar roller in Cuba’s Partagás factory before serving as an ambassador for Habanos S.A. where he would perform in-shop rolling demonstrations around the world. Cigarmaker and brand owner Rocky Patel met Paredes at one of these events in London and, impressed with his knowledge, offered Paredes a job.
Paredes signed on with Patel in 2015 and his debut brand, Tabaquero Hamlet Paredes, came to the market that year. It was the first time that Paredes had worked with non-Cuban tobacco.
Although Paredes resigned in late August, Rocky Patel still has complete ownership of the Hamlet lines as well as the trademark to the Hamlet name, which includes brands such as Liberation by Hamlet and Hamlet 25th Year. According to Nish Patel, executive vice president of the company, Tabaquero Hamlet Paredes is being discontinued while Rocky Patel will continue to produce the other Hamlet cigars, which represent about 1 percent total sales. Paredes never had any equity in the cigars he made for Rocky Patel, according to Patel.
“He left on a good note and we’re still friends,” Patel tells Cigar Aficionado. “We wish him the best.”