Bio not provided
As always, a very thought provoking series of questions. JD has already eloquently said some things that should be said: New Media continues to play an increasingly important role and I don't see that trend changing. There are exciting new people entering the business, many of whom he mentioned and commended, but perhaps he needs to take a look in the mirror.
As a relative newcomer to the brand ownership side of this business I can tell you that Jonathan's support for, and encouragement of we smaller but aspiring players is little short of amazing. Someone needs to point a finger at him every day and say "That is one great dude." He remembers all too well how hard it is to hold your head up amidst the setbacks that inevitably occur as we grow, but he's the perfect example of someone who has survived great adversity, and become wonderfully successful because he simply refused to fail, and was willing to do things far differently than had they had historically been done. His loyalty to those who with whom he surrounds himself is legend, and his kindness and generosity immense.
Where will Emilio be in 2013? We won't know the answer to that until the year has passed. What I can say is that my focus will shift ever more toward the Emilio brand. I will continue to play a leadership role in our retail operations, but have begun to divide my retail responsibilities among a team of energetic and creative new staff who will gradually relieve me of many day-to-day tasks. There will be new product releases, some of which have already been announced.
There will be additional distribution deals to come, and this is both because we have the physical facilities to do so, and I believe strongly that this will allow our sales staff, most of whom are part-timers, to ultimately achieve their dream of having a full-time place in the industry, a process that began with bringing Nathan McIntyre on full time. In addition it just makes sense to me that as we smaller brands band together in this way it gives us an economy of scale that benefits us all. We will continue to expand into regions where we have little market presence as we grow our sales team, and we will continue to be willing to make changes to how we do things as they are needed or dictated by the facts on the ground.
To give my 2 cents on a couple other items: Why not limited editions? Sometimes we just want to do something special because we can, or because we want to commemorate a special moment in our lives, and what's wrong with that? Not disclosing? Well there are all sorts of reasons that might be the case, and I accept that for what it is and have enough respect for those who request it that I honor the request without question or hesitation.
"What is Emilio?" It is a brand that has taken lessons from how we've so successfully grown our retail operations despite a depressed economy and an increasingly threatening regulatory and taxation reality - with Social Media. The fact that the question is even asked tells me that there are far too many retailers who have yet to understand the growing importance of being savvy to this way of marketing.
My sincere thanks to Halfwheel, and all the others like yourselves, who give so much support to this industry for no more reward than to simply participate.
In the end, despite our disagreements and differences, we are all in this for variations on a single theme ; we love it.
Talk amongst yourselves.
4 months, 3 weeks ago on Editorial: The Ten Questions for 2013
Thanks for helping us get the word out. I am really looking forward to this partnership, and to working with the new members of our family
5 months, 3 weeks ago on Press Release: Emilio Cigars To Distribute Ezra Zion
You know, with a few changes that could be a pretty sexy box.
8 months, 4 weeks ago on Weekly News (August 27, 2012)
While we are not at liberty to disclose which factory produced the Grimalkin cigars what I can tell you is that the cigars, now rebranded as La Musa, will continue to be produced in the same factory, with the same stringent quality standards, and the first La Musa release will be the identical blend, although we will add Corona and a small run of Lanceros to the line. Subsequent new blends in this series will be La Musa Melete, La Musa Aoide, and La Musa Mneme.
11 months ago on Review: Emilio La Musa Mousa Corona Gorda (Prerelease)
Thanks Brooks. We had not yet approved the aging of these cigars for packaging, and the samples you received were among that production. I suspect a few of the issues will improve once they are finished with aging and marrying
I might offer one small caveat to your "chicken and egg" notion. For those of us who are passionate about what we do it is not consumer demand that drives the creation of new releases. It is the fact that there is ever more exquisite tobacco to work with, and thus we are driven to create. It is what we do. Taken to it's rather illogical extreme, your notion would dictate that an artist should paint only when there is a market for his or her paintings, and abandon their passions, dreams, and creative essence when the market forces so dictate. While what we do may be a commodity for you, which you review and comment on, it is my art, and I will have no one who lacks that level of passion and creativity unilaterally decide when I should or should not create.
11 months, 1 week ago on Weekly News (June 18, 2012)
Actually, it is me being me. As my blog post said, I was never completely comfortable with Grimalkin anyway, and the new name is much more fitting. I took a negative and turned it into a positive. The muse is much happier with this name, and therefore all ended well. I don't change for anybody. I'm always me. I changed it because it made me feel better about the future of the line, and we were early enough into this that it needed to happen now, as opposed to later when it would have posed significant problems.
1 year, 3 months ago on News: Emilio Cigars Rebrands Grimalkin to La Musa, Announces Three Blends