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A CONVERSATION WITH ERNESTO PEREZ CARRILLO
Written by Gary J. Arzt

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

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GJA: What will the price range of these cigars be?

EPC: I expect our cigars to retail for $3.50 to 7.00, which in today’s market is a ‘popularly priced’ cigar.

GJA: When will you be starting production?

EPC: If everything goes as planned, Gary, and we find the facility in Santiago shortly, we’ll start to manufacture cigars in September of this year. That should allow us to release product in November or December of this year.

GJA: Historically, it is not easy for one to go from being an owner/entrepreneur, to an employee, when they sell their company. Are you looking forward to returning to be your own boss?

EPC: Definitely. While the ten years with General Cigar/Swedish Match have been very good, and I have had an excellent relationship with all my colleagues, I am eager to get back to doing my own thing. Particularly so, since my kids are now involved.

GJA: How do you feel about, finally, severing your relationship with La Gloria Cubana?

EPC: There’s a lot of emotion involved, as you can imagine. They had my going away party on the 11th and at times we were all very emotional and sentimental. But, at the same time, I am very positive about the steps I am taking.

GJA: With you leaving, and Daniel Nunez leaving, do you think there will be major changes, even problems, facing Swedish Match?

EPC: I wouldn’t anticipate any. Swedish Match is a very professional organization. Daniel will be available to them, in a consulting capacity for two years; and Modesta Fondeur, who has been with the company for thirty-five years will be moving into the role of Vice President. Daniel Carr in replacing Daniel as President and COO at General Cigar.

GJA: I see you looking at your watch Ernie, and I know you have to get going. I really appreciate this opportunity to look into the future with you, and I am sure the readers will enjoy it as well. Thank you.

EPC: I’ve enjoyed it as well, Gary.

So, at fifty-seven years old, Ernesto Perez Carrillo ends one career, as well as closing out a long chapter in his family’s history, and eagerly looks forward to his ‘second act.’

Anyone who has smoked the cigars produced by El Credito Cigar Company – and, dare I say, “Who hasn’t,” will look forward, just as eagerly, to what Carrillo, his daughter Lisette and his son, Ernesto will be sending our way very soon!

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Comments 

 
0 # "the touch of the masters hand"dr.stoogie 2009-03-28 04:39
The news of Ernesto's new cigar venture is the best news of the last 10 years. The man truly has a gift when it comes to cigars and I can hardly wait till December to purchase his new creation. Thanks for the news I have been waiting for.

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0 # ErnieKen in Miami 2009-03-29 09:54
I've been a fan of El Credito cigars for 20 years and look forward to his new efforts.
He's come a long way since high school :-)

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0 # One of my favoritesJack Hansen 2010-02-21 11:44
Mr Carrillo is also responsible for the El Rico Habano maduro torpedo, one of my top choices. Do not try on an empty stomach!

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