While the sale of Torano Cigars caught many in the industry off guard, the buyer was not overly surprising. Back at the IPCPR we reported that General Cigar was in acquisition mode.
It was announced first this morning by our friends at HalfWheel.com while we were en route to Mickey Blake’s in Connecticut for our live broadcast on location. The move which strengthens the number of brands for General Cigar promises to deliver a greater value and innovation to its retail and catalog consumers.
According to Dan Carr, president of General Cigar, “The acquisition of the Toraño brands represents an opportunity for us to strategically expand our portfolio. Our companies have been intertwined for over 50 years and I look forward to working with Charlie Toraño on plans to celebrate the upcoming centennial and to carry forward the vision, passion and innovation that is synonymous with the Toraño name while also leveraging our resources to bring even greater excitement and reach to our trade partners and consumers.”
The came as a surprise to many at Torano who were unaware of the company being sold, including family member Jack Torano who told The Cigar Authority this morning, “Looking back over the last couple of months it’s all clear now the writing was on the wall, this came as a shock to me this morning. I love this industry and hopefully will land on my feet somewhere within it. For now, It’s makes time to look for work“.
According to a tweet from an employee this morning, none of the sales staff will be making the transition.
Charlie Torano stated, “There is a long-standing and proud history of partnership between General Cigar and Toraño, dating back to my family’s exodus from Cuba. There is no other company that I would rather have continue my family’s legacy, and I look forward to seeing the Toraño brands prosper under General Cigar’s expertise”.
The Cigar Authority reached out to Sam Leccia this afternoon, who was part of Torano with his brands Leccia and Luchador. He was not prepared to issue a statement although he seemed happy with options on his table.
The sale is official as of today, September 11, 2014.
The Cigar Authority believes this is the first of a few acquisition by General that will be announced in the coming year.