Oettinger Davidoff Names New Head of Europe and Global Travel Retail

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Martin Kaufmann has been named the new senior vice president of Europe and global travel retail for Oettinger Davidoff AG, a position he will assume on Sept. 1. He replaces Albert Manzone, the current head of Europe, will be leaving the company and Christian Vonthron, the current head of global travel retail, will be taking early retirement.

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Kaufmann, 48, comes to Oettinger Davidoff AG from the Estée Lauder Companies, where he served as senior vice president and general manager North America for Aveda. He began his career with the Gillette Company, advancing to business unit director DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) for Braun. When Procter & Gamble  acquired Gillette, he became the global marketing director for Braun’s male grooming division and then became managing director for P&G Wella Haircare in  Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin America.

German by birth, Kaufmann grew up in the French speaking part of Switzerland and is bi-lingual in German and French, fluent in English and manages in Spanish and Italian as well. He holds an MBA from the University of Bayreuth in Germany, and studied Executive Education at IMD in Switzerland. He has lived and worked in Frankfurt, London, Geneva and New York. Martin and his family will be relocating from his current home in Minneapolis, Minn., to Basel in August.

In a statement, Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard, ceo of Oettinger Davidoff AG, said “with a track record of transformative leadership in branded consumer goods in global and regional roles, I am confident that Martin Kaufmann will make a significant contribution to accelerate growth in Europe as well as in global duty free. With this combined new key role in my senior team we will be better equipped for our future challenges and continue our company’s transformation.”

“I am very excited to join Hans-Kristian and the entire Oettinger Davidoff team to help driving the company’s business toward accelerated growth in Europe and Global Travel Retail,” Kaufmann said. “Oettinger Davidoff’s portfolio of strong brands and its leadership in that space makes it extremely compelling to me. And personally, I very much look forward to moving back to Switzerland, where I grew up.”

Manzone leaves the company after three years of significant contribution to the European business of Oettinger Davidoff, while Vonthron, who launched the Duty Free department at Oettinger Davidoff in 1997 and has led the impressive development to where our Global Travel Retail business is today, will take early retirement. He will be available to Oettinger Davidoff for future project work and will remain its representative on the board of TFWA, The Tax Free World Association, until the 2015 TFWA World Exhibition & Conference in October.

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Patrick Lagreid
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I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for MLB.com, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for Examiner.com, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.

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