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Oettinger Davidoff Names new CEO

Oettinger Davidoff Group, purveyor of such cigar brands as Avo, Griffins, and, of course, Davidoff, named its new CEO last week. Oettinger Davidoff has appointed Danish-born Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard to replace Davidoff’s current CEO, Dr. Reto Cina, who will end his 14-year tenure with the company at the end of May 2011.

Hoejsgaard is slated to begin working with the company at the beginning of March 2011, and will start work as CEO on June 1. According to the press release, his family has been involved in the tobacco industry for generations. Hoejsgaard previously worked for Seagrams, the legendary spirits company, as well as Guerlain and Lancaster Group, two international perfume and cosmetics companies.

“[Hoejsgaard’s] knowledge of the tobacco industry and his many years of managing brand products in the luxury goods sector will stand him in very good stead in his demanding role as CEO of our globally active family firm,” said Andreas Schmid, chairman of the Board of Directors at Oettinger Davidoff Group.

Hoejsgaard commented on his new role as CEO: “I am looking forward to joining a visionary family firm that over the decades has built Davidoff up into what today is a globally recognized, leading luxury brand for quality products.”

“It will be a privilege for me to lead the Oettinger Davidoff Group and the team behind it, and to work together on the further globalization of the company and brand as we take the Davidoff cigar business to the next level,” he added.

As a fan of all of the Davidoff products I’ve tried (see my review of the Griffins Short Robusto), I’m personally excited about the change. It’s always interesting to see how a new leader changes the face of a company. Look at how Tim Ozgener changed C.A.O. during his time as president of the company—he was responsible for the innovative packaging and presentation that a lot of their brands are known for.

It seems like we’re in the midst of a “changing of the guard”—C.A.O. and Davidoff have some new higher-ups, and Sam Leccia, creator of the Nub and Cain brands, departed from Oliva Cigar Co. not too long ago. We can only speculate about what will happen to all of these companies; hopefully the change will be favorable and they’ll all continue to put out high quality smokes.