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Weekly Cigar News Sampler: Royal Agio Ends U.S. Distribution Agreement with Drew Estate, H. Upmann Robustos Añejados Announced, and More

8 Dec 2017

As we have since July 2006, each Friday we’ll post our sampling of cigar news and other items of interest from the week. Below is our latest, which is the 558th in the series.

1) Royal Agio Cigars and Drew Estate are expected to terminate part of their distribution agreement on Monday, December 18. “The two companies joined forces globally on April 1, 2014 with Drew Estate distributing Royal Agio Cigars’ products in the United States, and Royal Agio distributing Drew Estate products in key European markets, such as Holland, France, Belgium and Germany,” reads a press release. Going forward, while Royal Agio will continue to distribute Drew Estate in Europe, Drew Estate will no longer distribute Royal Agio in the U.S.—Royal Agio will now manage its own U.S. distribution. The move signals Royal Agio’s “strengthening commitment to the U.S. market,” which is underscored by the opening of its new U.S headquarters in Bradenton, Florida. “We are grateful for the enthusiastic support and significant contributions made on behalf of the Drew Estate organization that have helped improve distribution and awareness for our premium cigar brands over the past three and a half years,” said George Margioukla, President of Royal Agio U.S.A. “Thanks in large part to these efforts, Royal Agio Cigars is now in a position to strengthen our U.S. presence and enhance direct support for our highly-valued trade partners and consumers.” The Royal Agio portfolio includes the premium handmade Balmoral brand, as well as two cigarillo brands: Mehari’s and Panter.

2) Habanos, S.A. has announced H. Upmann Robustos Añejados (4.9 x 50)—a new Cuban cigar that has been aged for five to eight years—will be available at international retailers in the coming weeks. It “does not exist in the standard portfolio of the [H. Upmann] brand,” but instead joins four other Cuban cigars in the Añejados portfolio: Romeo y Julieta Pirámides Añejados, Montecristo Churchill, Partagás Corona Gorda Añejados, and the Hoyo de Monterrey Hermosos No. 4.

3) Inside the Industry: The cigar industry lost a legend this week when José Orlando Padrón passed away. If you’re looking for more information about his life, his memoir is for sale with proceeds going to the Padrón’s charitable foundation. Also, check out this 2006 New York Times profile and this interview from 1998.

4) From the Archives: One of the first cigars we ever gave a top rating to (way back in 2006) was the Padrón Serie 1926 No. 6.

5) Deal of the Week: Here are 100 deals, including cigars from Ashton, Oliva, CAO, My Father, Tatuaje, Rocky Patel, Padrón, Drew Estate, and more. Free shipping is included on any purchase. If you really want to stock up, add promo code “GBP20D” at checkout to knock $20 off an order of $150 or more.

The Stogie Guys

photo credit: Royal Agio Cigars

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