Cigar News: Altadis, General, Davidoff, and Drew Estate Not Attending PCA 2020Today, the four largest cigar companies in America announced that they will not be attending the (formerly ) trade show this year. , , of Geneva USA, and each released separate press releases as well as a joint press release. Each cites different reasons for the withdrawl, but the general consensus is that they are unhappy with the declining attendance, lack of cooperation with members to make changes to the organization, and rising costs.

Each company said that they came to this conclusion independently, but there was clearly a coordinated effort on the announcement, showing strength in numbers. The linchpin for this action new seems to have been the general unrest around last year’s poorly executed announcement of Consumer Day, which has since been cancelled.

The trade show will still happen this year, but it will certainly be a different look and atmosphere. The future of the is a major question mark going forward.

Here is an excerpt from the joint statement:

Over recent years, an increasing number of retailers and manufacturers have come to recognize an unfortunate set of facts:

  • Our most important industry gathering – the trade show – has been in decline.
  • Attempts to discuss ways to reverse the downward trends in relevance, attendance, membership, and category growth have been met with silence.
  • The cost of the event – which continues to rise – has consumed funds that could otherwise be used to defend our industry from regulatory and legislative attacks, which threaten the livelihood of each and every one of us.

After six months of repeated outreach to , various efforts to discuss ways to enhance the structure, organization, and value of the show – for the benefit of retailers, manufacturers, distributors, and consumers – were unsuccessful. Absent significant improvements, the trade show will continue its downwards spiral. As “customers” of the trade show, it has become increasingly evident to each of us that we simply cannot continue to support and underwrite an event that is not satisfactorily responding to, or meeting, the needs of our industry.

A statement from the has been released as well as a statement from the CRA, read those responses here.