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Henri Wintermans Cigars, USA INC., Acquires US-Based Cigar Company CAO International

Henri Wintermans Cigars, USA INC., Acquires US-Based Cigar Company CAO International

Nashville, January 24, 2007: It’s been officially announced that Henri Wintermans Cigars, USA Inc., a sister company of ST Cigar Group Holdings (STCG) has acquired the renowned US-based cigar company CAO International.
The CAO brand, founded by Cano Ozgener, has been an outstanding success with hand-made cigar connoisseurs. It has become famous not only for its superb unique quality but also for its innovative product development and marketing concepts led by Tim and Aylin Ozgener which is much acclaimed in the trade and has set new benchmarks in the industry.
STCG is one of the world’s largest cigar companies especially known for the world’s largest selling small cigar, Café Crème. Other Wintermans brands include the #1 Canadian cigar brand, Colts, and its traditional brands, Henri Wintermans and Nobel Petit.
Tim Ozgener, whom will remain as President of CAO, says, “I am very excited by this new alliance which I feel will offer the company many tremendous opportunities, not only in the United States but internationally, with Henri Winterman’s expertise, CAO can evolve to become a truly global brand.”
Aylin Ozgener will also continue with the company focusing on special events and trade relations.
Gary Hyams has been appointed Chairman of CAO having previously been Managing Director of Henri Wintermans UK Company, Loretta Cigars. Gary brings a wealth of experience having previously dealt with many major international cigar brands.
Gary Hyams comments, “I have known Cano, Tim, and Aylin for some years now, and I feel what they have achieved with their brand is not only remarkable but will ultimately become one of the legends of the cigar business. We at Wintermans are proud to be associated with such a success story, and we are very much looking forward to firstly retaining the culture of the company, so fundamental to the success, but also in building the company further to meet the high expectations of the brands, consumers and trading partners. We also feel very privileged to be able to continue this special relationship we have with our current suppliers. For me it is all about the team and certainly I believe the best is yet to come.
For further inquiries please contact Gary Hyams, Chairman of CAO International, or Tim Ozgener, President, at CAO International, or at 615-352-0587, Nashville, TN.
Frans van Rijsingen, Corporate Affairs Manager, ST Cigar Group Holding, Eersel, The Netherlands (tel: 31 06 512 37409), e-mail
CAO International, Inc. is the producer of one of the country’s top lines of premium cigars, Meerschaum pipes and pipe tobaccos. Founded by Cano A. Ozgener in Nashville as a labor of love 39 years ago, today CAO products can be found on every continent in the world with the exception of Antarctica. CAO produces eight cigar lines that have all been rated ‘90’ (“OUTSTANDING”) or above by Cigar Aficionado and Cigar Insider.




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