Kretek International—the parent company behind Phillips & King, Ventura Cigar Co., Tobacco Plus Expo and others—has announced that it has acquired some of the former SpecComm tobacco media properties including Tobacconist Magazine, Pipes & Tobacco Magazine, Cigars & Leisure and TobaccoReviews.com.
Earlier this year, SpecComm was sold to the Tobacco Merchants Association (TMA), which indicated that it would continue to operate two magazines—Tobacco Reporter and Vapor Voice—as well as the GTNF Conference. A third publication, Tobacco Farmer Quarterly, would be incorporated into existing TMA publications. That left the aforementioned media titles without a home. Tobacconist published its May/June issue with an editor’s note confirming it was shutting down, Cigars & Leisure has continued as an online publication.
Still, it’s not clear what will happen to the two cigar-related publications now.
A press release from Kretek said, “TMG has been looking for a way to better to serve the premium tobacco industry and community with tailored news and content and will be able to do so with Pipes & Tobacco Magazine and the popular consumer-driven review website, TobaccoReviews.com.”
TMG is Tobacco Media Group, the Kretek subsidiary that includes TPE as well as Tobacco Business magazine, a magazine that competes with Tobacconist as both are trade publications for cigar and pipe retailers. Furthermore, much of the current staff for Tobacco Business worked at either Tobacconist or Cigars & Leisure.
The press release said the company will announce specific plans for each title in the fourth quarter of this year.