For much of the time leading up to the 2021 PCA Convention & Trade Show, Scott Weeks wasn’t planning on attending. His reasoning was that he didn’t plan on introducing any new products and the company was doing fine during this uptick in business. In fact, in late May he confirmed he wasn’t exhibiting at the trade show, and then a week later I received an email titled, “Change of plans.”
While Weeks changed his plans about exhibiting, he didn’t change his plans regarding new products. That didn’t seem to matter much, the half dozen or so times I walked by his booth on Day 3, Weeks was busy. Even on Day 4, I ended up waiting 15 minutes to get a chance to talk to him. And even then, a trio of guys from a retail shop showed up, cutting the interview a bit short.
One thing that’s booming at the moment is the “Factory Production Runs,” these are naked cigars that are made to order for retailers in six different blends and just about every vitola imaginable. Seriously, the list goes from 4 x 30 to 9 x 54—and that’s just the first page of vitolas. From there, the company will add pressing, pigtails, closed feet, etc. Given the inventory shortages facing some companies, it’s not surprising to hear this is doing well at the moment.