José Blanco is set to join E.P. Carrillo as its new Senior Vice President of Sales effective November 1st 2016. First news of this story was reported by Cigar Aficionado, and confirmed to Cigar Coop through Blanco’s wife Emma Viktorsson.
Blanco’s responsibilities will focus around building E.P, Carrillo’s sales force. However, Blanco is known as one of the industry’s great ambassadors and it is expected he will take on similar responsibilities at E.P. Carrillo in his new role.
Blanco and Viktorsson are the co-owners of Las Cumbres Tabaco, a company the two founded in 2014. Concurrent with Blanco’s move are changes at Las Cumbres. Viktorsson will handle the day to day operations of the company. She has relocated to Macedonia where she will run the company and put considerable focus on the U.S. market.
“Jose’s 100% E.P. Carrillo,” commented Viktorsson to Cigar Coop who indicated sales and distribution in the U.S. will remain as is, but now handled by her.
Blanco told Cigar Aficionado the decision to go E.P. Carrillo and for Viktorsson to focus on Europe were driven by the recent implementation of regulations on the cigar industry by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Blanco is a long time industry veteran in the cigar industry. In 1982 he went to work for Empesa Leon Jimenes – located in the Dominican Republic. He spent 18 years working for the cigarette and beer divisions of Leon Jimenes. In 1999 he moved over to La Aurora S.A., the company’s cigar division where he became the Director of Sales. While he worked in sales, he also was greatly involved with cigar blending. In 2011, Blanco relocated for Nicaragua where he became Senior Vice President of Joya de Nicaragua. During his tenure at Joya, he was heavily involved with the making of the CyB cigar. In August 2013, Blanco completed his two year contract at Joya and relocated with his family back to the Dominican Republic where he founded Las Cumbres Tabaco in 2014.
Photo Credits: Las Cumbres Tabaco