Glen Case’s story goes well beyond Kristoff Cigars and its brands. As a leader of a successful boutique cigar company that continues to see growth, Case has valuable insight into what it takes for any tobacco business to thrive. It should be no surprise that much of his advice is founded on lessons learned while working in the financial industry—from how to handle any profits made to how to scale a business wisely. The foundation for all of his advice and lessons learned during his time spent working with cigars comes down to one simple word: passion.
BUILD YOUR BRAND
When Case first started Kristoff, it was just him—and the brand he created was different from what exists today. In late 2004, Case launched Exclusive Cigars, which is still the legal entity of the company he runs today. The first successful blend, the Kristoff Original Criollo, put the company on the map and led to the decision to rebrand it as Kristoff Cigars. While the company now consists of 14 employees, Case remains front and center as the face of the Kristoff brand.
“Reinvesting back into your business is absolutely critical.”
Case personally makes appearances at events to promote the Kristoff brand, and his face can often be seen in various advertising campaigns promoting the brands. He’s also worked with his team to bring focus to the quality, consistency and availability of the Kristoff product. In another move to control the brand and ensure consistency and availability, Kristoff established its own warehousing and logistics company, Exclusive Cigars Imports. With this company, Kristoff is able to handle his business’s warehousing and logistics needs and also to provide similar services to other cigar manufacturers. All of these moves have helped Case build a strong brand and business model.
“Reinvesting back into your business is absolutely critical,” explains Case. “It is analogous to the stock market: You need to be investing in it to make money, but knowing where to invest, or not to, is critical to your success.”
CALCULATE YOUR GROWTH
In order for a business to grow, Case says you need to have a plan for growth. Larger manufacturers can rely on scalability to spark growth.