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Kaplowitz Media Cigar News Weekly Report: Weissenberger | Rocky Patel, Jack Torano | Espinosa Cigars, Protocol John Doe, & Ventura Cigar Co.

"All the news that's fit to poach."


Vice President of Marketing of Rocky Patel, Mark Weissenburger, has relinquished said position as of 1/4/18. This move on account of what is being cited as personal reasons leading to a geographical relocation and carried forward in an amicable manner. The plan is for Weissenberger to man the helm of RP's social media accounts for the time being.

fwiw, Weissenberger spent over a decade in the RP fold, working up from Serf... I mean territory manager. Prior to that, he gigged at Cigar Aficionado. He plans on staying in the industry and with that track record, I expect his name to pop up attached to a big name -- in quicker than a hiccup timeframe.


Jack Torano was intro'd as the new Espinosa Cigars Director of Sales, as of 1/2/19. This is a hole which Prez Erik Espinosa has been wanting to fill, and the industry vet Torano filled said hole well. Giggity. Apparently and according to the newly-minted Director, the two almost collab'd in 2014... whatever that means.

Meanwhile, Torano will be traveling the US while managing brokers & reps, as well as putting on events. In the past and up till this: 2011 Marketing Manager, Torano Family Cigars ---> 2014 Marketing & Sales Manager, Duran Cigars ---> 2016 General Cigar, brand ambassador/consultant (Torano).


This landed in my mailbox and I think I'll simply regurgitate it. #leastmode
"Cubariqueño Cigar Co. announces the release of the Protocol John Doe Series for ‪‬. John Doe is the name given to unidentified body’s [sic] until identification can be made at a later time. The cigars are available in 10 count bundles with pricing set at $75.00 per bundle. The first installment of this series is a limited run of only 300 bundles in a 5 X 50 Robusto size. The project is available now online only. Cubariqueño Cigar Co. does not know the origin and has no other blend information on JOHN DOE until a proper identification can be made and next of kin notified. Wrapper- Unknown Binder- Unknown Filler- Unknown"
I mean if other cigar blogs can just cut & paste press releases to pass off as content creation -- I can too. Ever-so sparingly, natch.

Oh and they're all sold out.


As of 1/2/19, Ventura Cigar Co. became a standalone part of the greater Kretek International parcel. The Ventura reps will now solely...uh...rep the premium lines of Archetype, Case Study, and PSyKo Seven. Apparently, they used to have the option of selling from the Kretek-owned Phillips & King portfolio largess.

[This is feeling more & more like a non-story the more & more I research it and might be deleted in the final draft of this post]

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