After massive price increases in 2022, Habanos S.A. says it generated $721 million in revenue, shattering its previous best year—$568 million in 2021—and up more than 31 percent compared to 2022.

Habanos S.A. was able to create more than $175 million in added revenues due to higher prices, not by rolling more cigars.

In 2022, Habanos S.A. introduced massive price hikes to its entire portfolio—with some Cohiba and Trinidad cigars doubling or tripling in price overnight—under the guise of a “global pricing standard.” The company said its goal was to have uniform prices for its products no matter where they were purchased, akin to other luxury products like watches or purses.

It chose to base the new prices based on Hong Kong, a place with high tobacco taxes.

Because tobacco products are subject to additional taxes,  oftentimes set in unique ways country-to-country, the global pricing standard didn’t create uniform prices around the world. Instead, it amounted to massive price increases for distributors, retailers and consumers. In 2023, the Cuban cigar monopoly continued to increase prices with many cigars going up by 10 percent, but the flagship Cohiba Behike BHK line increased by 50 percent.

Simultaneously, the company has not only released more new cigars priced above $100 per cigar, but now has multiple new releases in the $300-500 per cigar range. For example, during the press conference, the company highlighted the Cohiba Ideales ($500+ in the United Kingdom) and Siglo de Oro ($300+ in Hong Kong) as two highlight releases of 2023. Those are two new cigars for the flagship Cohiba brand, but even a less premium new launch mentioned—the Romeo y Julieta Cupidos—is currently on shelves for $77 per cigar in Havana, a price point that would have been challenging to believe just three years ago.

When the price increases began in mid-2022, the supplies of Cuban cigars were at historic lows. While there is hardly a surplus of Cuban cigars, there are clear signs that the pricing elasticity has had an effect. For those who are willing to pay, Cuban cigars can be found on retailers’ shelves and recent 2024 price increases announced earlier this year show a softer approach.

In Spain—where more Cuban cigars are sold than any other country in the world—the 2024 price increase was only 8.23 percent. Of particular note, the Trinidad brand was largely unaffected, with only the Trinidad Short, a cigarillo, increasing in price.

“The achievements of Habanos, S.A. during 2023 are the result of the recognition of the unique origin of our tobacco, the strength and prestige of our brands, and, of course, the passion shared by all those involved in this fascinating world of Habanos,” said The copresidents of Maritza Carrillo Gonzalez and Luis Sánchez-Harguindey, co-presidents of Habanos S.A., in a press release. “Thus, we celebrate 30 years of Corporación Habanos, S.A., offering unparalleled moments and experiences to all lovers of premium tobacco in every corner of the world.”

As far as countries, Habanos S.A. says its largest markets by sales revenues are, in order: China, Spain, Switzerland, Germany and the United Kingdom. In terms of the number of cigars sold, the top five countries in order are Spain, France, China, Germany and Switzerland.

Market-wise, Europe continues to be the top-selling area for Cuban cigars:

  • Europe — 56 percent (53.7 percent in 2022)
  • Asia Pacific — 21 percent (19.3 percent)
  • Americas — 13 percent (15.3 percent)
  • Africa and the Middle East — 10 percent (11.7 percent)

This story is part of halfwheel’s coverage of the Festival del Habano XXIV, the 2024 edition of Cuba’s annual cigar festival. For more coverage of the festival, click here.

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Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I have written about the cigar industry for more than a decade, covering everything from product launches to regulation to M&A. In addition, I handle a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff here at halfwheel. I enjoy playing tennis, watching boxing, falling asleep to the Le Mans 24, wearing sweatshirts year-round and eating gyros. echte liebe.