“A pleasure is always luxury, but luxury is not always a pleasure,” says President & CEO of Davidoff cigars, Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard, in a one on one chat with PINGDUBAI.COM and VIRTUOZITY magazine.
After a market visit and an exclusive event hosted for cigar connoisseurs, PINGDUBAI.COM and VIRTUOZITY magazine had an exclusive interview with Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard, President and CEO of Davidoff cigars, who shared insights on his work and on the brand.
– You’re still fairly new to the Davidoff brand, having come on board as CEO in 2011. How has the past year been at the helm of one of world’s biggest cigar brands?
“It’s coming up now to 2 years for me and it’s been a very interesting first period. Obviously, Davidoff is the number one luxury cigar in the world and what is exciting about it is that we are coming up with many new initiatives. We believe we can do many different things in terms of cigar development. As you know, today, it’s all produced in the Dominican republic; in 2013, we will come out with a cigar from a different origin, because we believe the brand can carry many different things.”
– Before you came on as CEO, you hadn’t been involved with the Davidoff brand. What’s your background in the cigar world?
“A Davidoff cigar is a luxury products, so it’s a very similar world to my previous world in watches, jewelry, champagne and cognac. But what is different about Davidoff cigars is that it is a well deserved pleasure. It is something that during a busy day, is a pleasure. And I think that a pleasure is always luxury, but luxury is not always a pleasure. It’s a very fine distinction.”
– Davidoff has come out with a number of exciting releases this year, such as The Limited Edition 2012 White Edition. What was the thinking behind creating this cigar?
“It is to open up the menu of Davidoff. With limited editions, with Puro D’Oro, we are opening up eith and people can be surprised again. I’m most excited about is the Puro D’Oro because we are the first ones ever to make a Puro Dominicano, so everything, from filler to buying the wrapper..”
– Clearly, Davidoff makes cigars for true conoisseurs. What does the brand have for the more casual smoker?
“The brand is for relaxation and celebration. Celebration is often more formal. We have several things for relaxation, if you want a casual smoke. Like the number 2. Davidoff is about luxury, but it is also about lifestyle.”
– In the Middle East, Cuban cigars are very popular. What is the brand doing to lure customers away from the Cubans and over to Davidoff’s products?
” We are not trying to lure or take people away. What we’re trying to do is open people’s minds. Our objective is to brimg Davidoff to the “menu” of people who want a different experience once in a while.
Hoejsgaard went on to discuss Davidoff’s subbrands’ expansion plans in the Middle East, as well as the potential opening of Davidoff flagship stores in the region.
Interview by Patrick Brais, Founder/Editor In Chief of Virtuozity Magazine