Villiger Cigars has hired former Habanos S.A. commercial vice president Manuel García to serve as an advisor to the company’s international handmade cigar division, according to a press release issued by the company today.
García spent more than 15 years as the head of sales and marketing for the Cuban cigar company, including traveling to more than 100 countries to promote the island’s famed cigars. However, his tenure was marred by a stint in jail for corruption charges, specifically selling genuine Habanos products “at a fraction of their normal price to black-market distributors in the Caribbean in return for bribes” according to a report by The Economist.
Prior to his time with Habanos, he was the general manager of 5th Avenue Products Trading, the exclusive distributor for Habanos products in Germany from 1991-1995, which is where he worked alongside Heinrich Villiger.
“I feel this to be an overdue reunion,” said Villiger in a press release. “We look forward to Manuel contributing immediately, as we continue to forge ahead with delivering the best possible products to our consumers.”
Garcia will begin working in his new role immediately, and will operate out of the ABAM Factory in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, the factory where all of Villiger’s Dominican-made cigars are produced.
Image courtesy of Villiger Cigars.