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Tobacco

Specialty Tobacco Group Buys Media Assets

Kretek International secures cigar magazines, website

MOORPARK, Calif.Specialty tobacco firm Kretek International has purchased a portfolio of industry-related media assets, including three magazines and a website, according to the company.

The Moorpark, Calif.-based company has entered into a definitive agreement with Tobacco Merchants Association (TMA), Princeton, N.J., to acquire media assets of the company formerly known as SpecComm International Inc., which TMA acquired in January 2019. This includes Tobacconist Magazine, Pipes & Tobacco Magazine, Cigars & Leisure and TobaccoReviews.com. These media entities will be housed under Tobacco Media Group (TMG), a Kretek subsidiary.

“We feel this is a strategically sound acquisition for Kretek,” said Jason Carignan, chief marketing officer for Kretek. “We recognize the power of journalism and its influence in building relationships between both people and products. These titles have done the footwork of creating loyal audiences and solid reputations.”

The titles will be in addition to Tobacco Business Magazine, which is a bimonthly trade publication for the premium tobacco and cigar industry. Specific plans for each of these titles will be announced in the fourth quarter of 2019, the company said.

“TMA wanted to be good stewards to these important assets to the tobacco community,” said Chris Greer, CEO of TMA. “After our acquisition of SpecComm’s assets, we needed to find a home for them with an organization that could deal with consumers in a way an information group like ours could not.”

Kretek’s TMG also has an annual trade show, the Tobacco Plus Expo (TPE), which brings together businesses and retailers in the tobacco, vapor and alternative industries and has continued to grow year after year, the company said.

Kretek, the parent company of Phillips & King, Ventura Cigar Co. and TMG, is an importer, marketer and distributor of specialty tobacco products to the convenience-store, mass-merchant and general retailing channels.

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