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José Blanco, former sales director for La Aurora S.A., will soon join Joya de Nicaragua as their new senior vice president, according to post by Cigar Aficionado. This comes on the heels of his retirement from La Aurora, which he announced this past June.

Once he gets situated at Joya de Nicaragua (he’s currently in the process of moving from Santiago, Dominican Republic to Managua, Nicaragua), Blanco will be responsible for creating new blends and brands, and will also essentially serve as the voice of the company. His goal, he told Cigar Aficionado, is to “bring Joya to the next level, because I believe the company has the tradition, has the tobacco, has the name, and the people at Joya are very professional people with a great passion and a love for great tobacco.”

Dr. Alejandro Martinez Cuenca, owner of the Joya de Nicaragua brand, told Cigar Aficionado that he believes Blanco is their “missing link.” He went on to explain that Blanco “knows what our weaknesses are and knows how we can deal with them.”

I, for one, am pretty excited about this. I’ve tried a handful of La Aurora’s smokes, including the 1495, and 107, and two of Joya de Nicaragua’s, the Antaño 1970 and the Antaño Dark Corojo, and I think that Blanco’s experience and expertise could add a lot to Joya’s operations, which are outstanding already. I’m looking forward to seeing what the new team comes up with, and I wish Blanco and everybody else at Joya de Nicaragua the best of luck with their future endeavors.


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