Davidoff_Golden_Band_Awards_2016_

For the fifth consecutive year, Davidoff Cigars hosted its annual the Golden Band Award Show at the IPCPR Trade Show. This year the award ceremony were held on July 26th, 2016 at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. The awards program is meant to honor and the company’s best Appointed Merchants that according to Davidoff “truly embody the Davidoff Standard of Excellence”.  In addition to the awards, the company provided details of the state of the business. However, without question the highlight of the night is when brand ambassador Avo Uvezian was honored with a special award from his home country of Armenia.

The theme for the 2016 Awards focused around Davidoff’s showcase product, the new Davidoff Yamasá – the third product under its discovery pillar.

From a business standpoint, Davidoff of Geneva North America President Jim Young reported nine percent growth for 2015. This includes 18 percent growth for the Davidoff brand that has resulted in double growth over the past five years.  Meanwhile Camacho grew 34 percent in 2015 – a growth level that has doubled over the past four years. Finally, 2015 was a huge year for the Avo brand with a total of 40 percent growth.

Young pointed out that 2016 has started out strong as well, with the Davidoff brand up 16 percent, Camacho up 25 percent, and Avo up 29 percent – resulting in an overall 15 percent growth.

Both Young and Oettinger Davidoff CEO Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard addressed the pending regulations by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration soon to go into place in the U.S. market. The company reiterated its attempts to comply, but noted there will be heavy costs to do so. Young told the Appointed Merchants this is not a time to panic and that Davidoff has a commitment to continue to grow its business.

Uvezian’s award was the highlight of the night. Arrangements were made for the 90 year old brand ambassador to receive a special Medal of Honor from the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. The award was given for Uvezian’s contributions to both music and business

The Awards

Best New Appointed Merchant

Winner: Fogue & Bates (Tulsa, Oklahoma)

Franklin Cigar (Franklin, Tennessee)
Smoker’s Haven (Columbus, Ohio)
Tobacco Grove (Maple Grove, Minnesota)
ZT Cigars (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma)

Best Merchandising

This honors the Appointed Merchant who best meets the Davidoff Brand merchandising expectations.

Winner: Tobacco Franklin Cigar (Franklin, Tennessee)

Ambassador Fine Cigars (Scottsdale, Arizona)
Club Humidor (San Antonio, Texas)
Just For Him (Springfield, Missouri
Tobacco Locker (Port Charlotte, Florida)

Canadian Depositaire of the Year

This is the new award for Canadian retailers.

Winner: Zigareen – A Simple Pleasure (Calgary, Albert)

Cigar Connoisseurs (Vancouver, British Columbia)
The Humidor Cigar Co Ltd. (Vaughan, Ontario)
Nottingham Cigars & Pipes (Edmonton, Alberta)
Vasco (Montreal, Quebec)

Best Davidoff Performance (Single Location)

This is awarded to the Appointed Merchant with a single location that has the highest level of Davidoff brand purchases.

Winner: Maxamar Ultimate Cigars (Orange, CA)

Blend Bar Cigar (Indianapolis, Indiana)
Hemingway’s (Palo Alto, California)    gars (Orange, California)
Regency Cigar Emporium (East Greenwich, Rhode Island)
Tobacconist of Greenwich (Greenwich, Connecticut)

Best Davidoff Performance (Multiple Locations)

This is awarded to the Appointed Merchant with two or more locations that has the highest level of Davidoff brand purchases. Corona Cigar Company repeated as the winner.

Winner: Ambassador Fine Cigars (Scottsd

Casa de Montecristo (Countryside, Illinois)
DW International Distributors LLC (Santa Monica, California)
Humidor of Westmont (Westmont, Illinois)
Serious Cigars (Houston, Texas)

Davidoff Growth Award (Single Location)

This is awarded to the Appointed Merchant with a single location that has the largest percentage and dollar increase of Davidoff brand sales. Cigarz on the Avenue repeated as the winner.

Winner: Hemingway’s (Palo Alto, California)

Buckhead Cigar Club (Atlanta, Georgia)
Doc James Cigars & Golf (Westchester County, New York)
Maxamar Ultimate Cigars (Orange, California)
Mission Wine & Tobacco Co. (Pasadena, California)

Davidoff Growth Award (Multiple Locations)

This is awarded to the Appointed Merchant with a two or more location that has the largest percentage and dollar increase of Davidoff brand sales.

Winner: Tinder Box Cigars (Charlotte, NC)

Ambassador Fine Cigars (Scottsdale, Arizona)
DW International Distributors LLC (Santa Monica, California)
Puff N Stuff (Decatur, Georgia)
Smoke Inn (Palm Beach, Florida)

Appointed Merchant of the Year

This is awarded to the Appointed Merchant who has grown and promoted the Davidoff portfolio.

Winner: Blend Bar Cigar (Indianapolis, Indiana)

Doc James Cigars & Golf (Westchester County, New York)
Hemingway’s (Palo Alto, California)
The Humidor Cigars and Lounge (Wichita, Kansas)
Prime Cigar & Wine Bar (Boca Raton, Florida)

Industry Service Award

Bestowed upon an individual from our Appointed Merchants who has done the most to sustain the premium cigar industry and to advance the industry’s agenda in legislation, regulation and the community.

Winners: Ron Michelson, Briar Patch (Sacramento, CA); Terry Gallagher, Smoker Friendly (Boulder, CO), and Mike Copperman (Cigar Rights of America)

Zino Davidoff Legacy Award

This is awarded to an individual in our industry, from amongst out Appointed Merchants, who has stood out over the yers as a true champion of what premuim cigars and premium cigar retailing is all about.

Winner: Gary Kolesaire, The Tobacco Shop of Ridgewood

Past Winners

For reference, here were the previous winners. These winners were given the opportunity to carry the ultra-limited Davidoff Golden Band cigar.

Best New Appointed Merchant
2015 Havana Phil’s Cigar Company (Greensboro, NC)
2016 Fogue & Bates (Tulsa, OK)

Best Merchandising
2012 Island Smoke Shop (Key Largo, FL)
2013 Prime Cigar & Wine Bar (Boca Raton, FL)
2014 Cup O’ Joes (Queensbury, NY)
2015 Tobacco Shop of Ridgewood (Ridgewood, NJ)
2016 Franklin Cigar (Franklin, Tennessee)

Canadian Depositaire of the Year
2016 Zigareen – A Simple Pleasure (Calgary , AB)

Best Davidoff Performance (Single Location)
2012 The Tobacconist of Greenwich (Greenwich, CT)
2013 The Tobacconist of Greenwich (Greenwich, CT)
2014 The Tobacconist of Greenwich (Greenwich, CT)
2015 Blend Bar Cigar (Indianapolis, Indiana)
2016 Maxamar Ultimate Cigars (Orange<, CA)

Best Davidoff Performance (Multiple Locations)
2012 Humidor Of Westmont  (Westmont, IL)
2013 Ambassador Fine Cigars (Scottsdale, AZ)
2014 Corona Cigar Company (Orlando, FL)
2015 Corona Cigar Company (Orlando, FL)
2016 Ambassador Fine Cigars (Scottsale, AZ)

Davidoff Growth Award (Single Location)
2012 Ambassador Fine Cigars (Scottsdale, AZ)
2013 Angry Moon Cigars (Palm Beach Gardens, FL)
2014 Cigarz on the Avenue (Winter Park, FL)
2015 Cigarz on the Avenue (Winter Park, FL)
2016 Hemingway’s (Palo Alto CA)

Davidoff Growth Award (Multiple Locations)
2012 Cigars by Chivas (Pasadena, CA)
2013 Corona Cigar Company (Orlando, FL)
2014 Humidor of Westmont (Westmont, IL)
2015 Casa de Montecristo (Chicago, IL)
2016 Tinder Box Cigars (Charlotte, North Carolina)

Industry Service Award

2012:
John Andersson, W. Curtis Draper (Washington, DC)
Craig Cass, Tinder Box of Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
Jeff Borysiewicz, Corona Cigar (Orlando, FL)
Christian Hutson, Just for Him Cigars (Springfield, MO)

2013:
Finnie Helmuth, The Humidour Cigar Shoppe (Cockeysville, MD)
Curt Diebel, Diebel’s Sportsmens Gallery  (Kansas City, MO)
Gary Pech, Old Virginia Tobacco (Woodbridge, VA)

2014:
David Garafolo, Two Guys Smoke Shop (New Hampshire)
Gary Kolesaire, Tobacco Shop of Ridgewood (Ridgewood, NJ)

2015:
Jim Clark, Strauss Tobacconist (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Harris Saunders, Cigars and More (Birmingham, Alabama)

2016:

Ron Michelson, Briar Patch (Sacramento, California)
Terry Gallagher, Smoker Friendly (Boulder, Colorado)
Mike Copperman, Cigar Rights of America

Appointed Merchant of the Year
2012 Tinder Box Waldorf (Waldorf, MD)
2013 Maxamar Cigar (Orange, CA)
2014 Tinder Box of Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
2015 Tobacconist of Greenwich (Greenwich, CT)
2016 Blend Bar Cigar (Indianapolis, IN)

Zino Davidoff Legacy Award
2012 Diana Silvius, UpDown Cigars (Chicago, IL)
2013 David Berkebile, Georgetown Tobacco
2014 Curt Diebel, Diebel’s Sportsmens Gallery (Kansas City, MO)
2015 Keith Rumbo, Club Humidor (San Antonio, TX)
2016 Gary Kolesaire, Tobacco Shop of Ridgewood (Ridgewood, NJ)