In such a crowded and competitive market, coming up with a new brand and introducing it to pipe smokers is no easy task. The only way to achieve success is by being even more discriminating than customers, as well as being swifter and more dynamic than a sports car. Bentley is not a new brand. In the 1980s and ‘90s it was renowned for its superb, classic, perfectly engineered pipes designed in Germany by the brilliant master pipe maker, Former. Bentley has made a comeback and is visibly in perfect form.
The two cousins, Oliver and Hans-Martin Schuster, are the sixth generation of a dynasty of cigar makers who have been manufacturing cigars since the late nineteenth century in the German city of Bünde, which is the German cigar capital. For some time the Schusters had already been thinking about extending their products to include pipes, and in 2010 the opportunity finally arose when a series of events led them to get in touch with the Bentley pipe. It was love at first sight, but acquiring a brand is only the first step in a lengthy process.
A brand can be both compelling and delicate, and building up a solid brand depends on the type of attention paid to its expansion and interpretation. In this case, the Bentley was to be interpreted through its psychological aspects and its history. It was important to highlight this through colours and materials, but above all it was essential to identify that ineffable “something” that brings the brand to life as well as being the message that the brand conveys. Who else but Former, who had created this pipe, could convey to the Schusters the passion and incredible precision that the Bentley pipe fosters. Following lengthy hours of discussion with the Master to put the finishing touches to the whole project, the Schusters still had to find a partner to rise to this exciting challenge. Thus, the Gubbels family enthusiastically accepted to oversee production, starting with the design of the new Bentley.
Nowadays, the Bentley brand covers not just pipes, but also tobacco, cigarettes, and even rum, with a new logo, shapes and ideas created by an automobile designer. There are three new pipe models with three different finishes, all stylish, yet classic, having some interesting features in aluminium. They are as elegant as thoroughbreds, as sensitive as artists, and alluring, ready for any challenge. The remarkable attention to detail is evident throughout the whole range of pipes, whether in the choice of material, technology, production or the packaging designed to reflect the different products it contains.
Bentley is on the starting line. Smokers are already cheering and at the finishing line some wave a chequered flag.
Special thanks to Mr. Martin Schuster and Mr. Elbert Gubbels for their precious contribution
Milano, May 2014