Thompson Cigar

Last updated
Thompson Cigar
Public
IndustryRetail
Founded1915
Headquarters5401 Hangar Court. Tampa, Florida 33634
Number of locations
1
ProductsCigars & Cigar Accessories
Website thompsoncigar.com

Thompson Cigar Company is a cigar and cigar accessories retailer located in Tampa, Florida. Thompson Cigar is the oldest mail order cigar company in the United States. [1] Originally located in Key West, Florida, Thompson Cigar first opened in 1915. In 1920, after hurricanes decimated most of the cigar factories in Key West, original owner M.A. Thompson moved his factory to Ybor City, located in Tampa, Florida, known as "Cigar Capital of the World." Thompson acquired Postal Permit #1 in the city of Tampa, which it still holds today. In 1934, M.A. Thompson moved his factory to Bartow, Florida where it would remain until 1960. [2]

Contents

Thompson Cigar Company The Early Days.jpg
Thompson Cigar Company

Incorporation and growth

In 1960, Thompson Cigar Company was sold to Robert Franzblau. Franzblau relocated cigar production to local Tampa factories such as M & N Cigars and Gradiaz-Annis, which would make cigars under the Thompson brand. Both Stanford Newman and Morton Annis would serve as Franzblau's mentors for many years. Newman bought Cuesta-Rey and Annis owned Gold Label and Macanudo, which he eventually sold to General Cigar Company. Expansion led Franzblau to permanently establish corporate headquarters at 5401 Hangar Court, Tampa, Florida 33634. Today, Thompson Cigar runs the single largest inventory storage humidor in the United States, totaling over 300,000 cubic feet (8,500 m3). [2] Thompson Cigar distributes private label cigars, national cigar brands, boutique cigars, humidors, and smoking accessories. [3]

In 2018, the company was sold to Scandinavian Tobacco Group, a public company based in Denmark. [4]

In 2019 Parent company, Scandinavian Tobacco Group laid off 112 workers and announced the outlet store along with Thompson's other Tampa operations were to close and be centralized in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania as part of its consolidation of operations. [5]

Initiatives

In 2008, Thompson Cigar became a sponsor for Cigars & Guitars, The Tampa History Museum, Thanks Troops Golf Tournament, Southeastern Guides Dogs & Paws for Patriots. Also in 2008, Thompson Cigar announced the donation of over 300,000 cigars to American troops. [1] Troops who received cigars included those in combat areas of Afghanistan and Iraq, plus Korea, the Horn of Africa and three Navy aircraft carrier battle groups. [6] As of January 2015, Thompson Cigar had donated over a million cigars to American troops.

Operating divisions

Thompson Cigar was affiliated with Thompson Group Inc., which was listed #73 on the 2004 Catalog Age top 100 list. [7] Thompson Group was a multi-channel merchant that included Thompson Cigar, Café Belmondo (sold 2008), Casual Living USA (sold 2010), and Linen Source (sold 2010). [8] The company does business in three different catalog and online formats: tobacco, general merchandise, and membership cigar club.

Customer base

Thompson Cigar has over 600,000 active customers nationwide. On average 167,800 people visit its website monthly. Thompson Cigar caters to a 69%, more affluent, male demographic. [9]

They currently hold an "F" rating with the Better Business Bureau, accumulating nearly 100 complaints in the last 12 months. [10]


Thompson Retail Websites

Thompson & Company of Tampa Inc. owns and operates two retail websites, Thompsoncigar.com and one auction site, Thompsoncigarauctions.com.

Thompsoncigar.com is the premiere site that was launched in 1999. Thompsoncigar.com supports the Thompson Cigar mail order catalog, established in 1915 and the oldest Mail Order cigar company. Thompsoncigar.com offers thousands of cigars from the World's most popular manufacturers.

Governance

Thompson and Company of Tampa is owned by the Scandinavian Tobacco Group.

See also

Related Research Articles

Cigar A rolled bundle of tobacco

A cigar is a rolled bundle of dried and fermented tobacco leaves made to be smoked. They are produced in a wide variety of sizes and shapes. Since the 20th century, almost all cigars are made of three distinct components: the filler, the binder leaf which holds the filler together, and a wrapper leaf, which is often the best leaf used. Often there will be a cigar band printed with the cigar manufacturer's logo. Modern cigars often come with 2 bands, especially Cuban Cigar bands, showing Limited Edition bands displaying the year of production.

Davidoff

Davidoff is a Swiss premium brand of cigars, cigarettes and smoker's accessories. The Davidoff cigarette brand has been owned by Imperial Brands after purchasing it in 2006. The non-cigarette portion of the Davidoff tobacco brand is owned by Oettinger Davidoff AG, which is based in Basel, Switzerland.

Swedish Match

Swedish Match AB is a Swedish company based in Stockholm that makes snus, moist snuff, and chewing tobacco. These products are known as moist smokeless tobacco. The company also makes machine-made cigars, matches, and lighters and sells batteries, light bulbs and disposable razors. Swedish Match operates in 11 countries and has 6,270 employees. The products are sold globally, with a majority of sales originating in Scandinavia and the United States.

Ybor City Neighborhood in Hillsborough County, Florida, United States

Ybor City is a historic neighborhood just northeast of downtown Tampa, Florida, United States. It was founded in the 1880s by Vicente Martinez-Ybor and other cigar manufacturers and populated by thousands of immigrants, mainly from Cuba, Spain, and Italy. For the next 50 years, workers in Ybor City's cigar factories rolled hundreds of millions of cigars annually.

Nat Sherman

Nat Sherman is the brand name for a line of handmade cigars and "luxury cigarettes." The company, which began as a retail tobacconist, continues to operate a flagship retail shop now located on 42nd Street, off Fifth Avenue, in New York City. Corporate offices are now located at the foot of the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, New Jersey.

Arturo Fuente

Arturo Fuente is a brand of cigar, founded by Arturo Fuente, Sr. in 1912 in West Tampa, Florida. Following a catastrophic fire in 1924, the brand ceased production for 22 years, reemerging in 1946 on a limited, local basis. Ownership was transferred to Arturo's younger son, Carlos Fuente, Sr. in 1958. Following the 1960 United States embargo of Cuba, the Fuente brand began a period of slow and steady growth, emerging as one of the most critically acclaimed makers of hand-rolled premium cigars outside of Cuba. As of 2010 the company was producing 30 million cigars per annum from its factory in the Dominican Republic.

Tobacconist dealer in tobacco

A tobacconist, also called a tobacco shop, a "tobacconist's shop" or a smoke shop, is a retailer of tobacco products in various forms and the related accoutrements, such as pipes, lighters, matches, pipe cleaners, pipe tampers. More specialized retailers might sell: ashtrays, humidification devices, hygrometers, humidors, cigar cutters, and more. Books and magazines, especially ones related to tobacco are commonly offered. Items irrelevant to tobacco such as puzzles, games, figurines, hip flasks, walking sticks, and confectionery are sometimes sold. In the United States, a tobacconist shop is traditionally represented by a wooden Indian positioned nearby. Most retailers of tobacco sell other types of product; today supermarkets, in many countries with a special counter, are usually the main sellers of the common brands of cigarette. In the United Kingdom, a common combination in small corner shops has been a newsagent selling newspapers and magazines, as well as confectionery and tobacco. In UK retailing this sector is referred to as "CONTOB".

Pepin Garcia American businessman

Don José "Pepin" Garcia is the CEO of El Rey de los Habanos, Inc, a cigar company in Miami, also known as My Father Cigars. He is a noted cigar maker living in Miami, Florida. Born in Cuba, he is a master cigar roller and blender, and the creator and maker of numerous popular cigar brands.

J. C. Newman Cigar Company

J.C. Newman Cigar Company was established in 1895 and is the oldest family-owned premium cigar maker in the United States. It was founded in Cleveland, Ohio by Julius Caeser Newman, an Austro-Hungarian immigrant. The business relocated to a historic 1910 cigar factory in the Cigar City of Ybor City, Florida in 1954. The family business is now in its fourth generation.

Vicente Martinez Ybor Spanish-American industrialist

Vicente Martinez-Ybor, was a Spanish entrepreneur who first became a noted industrialist and cigar manufacturer in Cuba, then Key West, and finally Tampa, Florida.

History of Ybor City Neighborhood in Hillsborough County, Florida, United States

Ybor City is a historic neighborhood that includes the Ybor City Historic District in Tampa, Florida. It is located just northeast of downtown Tampa and north of Port Tampa Bay. The neighborhood has distinct architectural, culinary, cultural, and historical legacy that reflects its multi-ethnic composition. It was unique in the American South as a prosperous manufacturing community built and populated almost entirely by immigrants.

Swisher is a leading tobacco manufacturer whose cigars and smokeless tobacco brands include one of the largest-selling cigar brands in the world, Swisher Sweets.

Piloto Cigars Inc.

Piloto Cigars Inc. is a privately held company that produces the Padrón cigar brand from Nicaragua. Commonly known as Padrón Cigars, the company was founded September 8, 1964 in Miami, Florida by Cuba-native José Orlando Padrón. In 1970, Padrón moved the company to Estelí, Nicaragua.

Scandinavian Tobacco Group

Scandinavian Tobacco Group is a manufacturer of cigars and traditional pipe tobacco. The company is headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, and is a publicly listed Company on NASDAQ Copenhagen.

Famous Smoke Shop

Famous Smoke Shop is one of the largest cigar mail order businesses in the United States. The company was formed in October, 1939 in Midtown Manhattan as a cigar and gift shop. In 2000, increasing rents and taxes forced the company to move its operations to Easton, Pennsylvania, a state that currently imposes no cigar tax. Famous Smoke Shop is engaged primarily in the retail and wholesale of cigars, humidors, and cigar accessories through mail order catalogs, a brick and mortar retail shop, and several websites.

General Cigar Company United States historic place

General Cigar Company is the largest manufacturers of premium cigars in the world. It is a subsidiary of Scandinavian Tobacco Group with North American headquarters located in Richmond, Virginia.

Frank Llaneza American businessman

Frank Anthony Llaneza (1920–2010) was a tobacco blender and former executive of Villazon & Co. who is regarded as a pioneer in the resurgence of the premium cigar industry at the end of the 20th Century. Llaneza is best known for the creation and manufacture of a number of popular cigar brands in the years after the 1962 Cuban Embargo, including Hoyo de Monterrey, Punch, Bolivar, and Siglo.

Florida Brewing Company building

The Florida Brewing Company building is a historic brewery building that once housed Ybor City Brewing Company, which became Florida Brewing Company. It has been restored and converted into a law office. It is the tallest building in Tampa's Ybor City Historic District.

Camacho Cigars was founded in 1961 by Simon Camacho and acquired by the Eiroa family in 1995. Now part of the Oettinger Davidoff Group, Camacho Cigars is based in Danlí, Honduras and specializes in authentic handmade Cuban seed cigars. After being exiled from Cuba in 1961, Simon Camacho, who was originally from Cuba, began his cigar business in Miami, Florida. Simon Camacho’s cigars gained success in the United States, as well as abroad and even found a fan in the company of British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill. Consequently, Camacho has since named one of its most popular cigars after Mr. Churchill. The vitola was developed in the Romeo Y Julieta factory of Cuba in approximately 1903. Production during this period reached 2 to 3 million cigars per year and the quantity continued to grow as the 1990s cigar boom years approached.

The Tampa cigar makers' strike of 1931 took place in Ybor City, Tampa, Florida in the months of November and December. Some strikers were jailed, "Lectors" were banned and there was a lockout. Following legal intervention, some workers returned to work at previous wage levels but others were not re-employed. Lectors had by tradition been elected by the workers and, as well as reading aloud newspaper articles, often from left-wing radical publications, they recited and acted more generally, including from classic works – effectively they provided a form of education for illiterate workers. The most significant effect of the strike in the longer term was that the lector culture was brought to an end.

References

  1. 1 2 Thompson Cigar Announces Donation of Over 300,000 Cigars to American Troops. Published by Forbes.com on May 21, 2008. Accessed on June 3, 2008.
  2. 1 2 The Thompson Group. Employee Handbook. Brochure. Tampa: Author, 2006. Published by Thompson & Co. of Tampa, Inc on May 18, 2006. Accessed on June 2, 2009.
  3. [ dead link ]
  4. Carollo, Malena (1 February 2018). "Danish company buys Tampa's Thompson Cigar for $62 million". Tampa Bay Times . Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  5. "New owner to lay off 112 and close Tampa's Thompson Cigar outlet store and distribution center". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved 2020-10-13.
  6. "Support Our Troops | Our Troops Online | Send Items to U.S. Troops Stationed Overseas | Help With Postage Costs Always Needed | {title}". Our Troops Online. 2004-09-11. Retrieved 2012-11-27.
  7. "2004 Catalog Age 100" (PDF). Multichannelmerchant.com. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2005-10-31. Retrieved 2012-11-27.
  8. Archived October 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  9. "Thompsoncigar.com Traffic and Demographic Statistics by Quantcast". Quantcast.com. 2012-11-23. Retrieved 2012-11-27.
  10. "Thompson Cigar Company | Better Business Bureau® Profile". www.bbb.org. Retrieved 2019-12-31.