Belgian cigars making Nicaraguan school accessible

Zwevegem, 25 June 2020 – Oliva Cigars, a subsidiary of J. Cortès from West Flanders in Belgium, is supporting the Escuela Oliva, a primary school near the Oliva factory in Nicaraguan cigar capital Esteli.

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Catholic primary school Escuela Oliva is located in a neighbourhood that houses many workers from the nearby Oliva cigar factory. But until recently, children of these workers could not access this school because their parents could not afford the fees. CEO Frederik Vandermarliere explains how all this changed when Oliva Cigars was taken over by Belgium’s J. Cortès: “Not only did we make significant improvements to working conditions, we also invested in the school so that the children of our colleagues are now able to attend classes there.”

Long-term engagement

Oliva wants to make this a long-term engagement. That is why the cigar manufacturer is donating part of the profits generated by Oliva cigars directly to the school. “Oliva is supporting our teachers financially and pays for one meal a day for all our pupils. It’s giving this young generation hope and a good education”, says Wilmer Jeronimo Lagos, English teacher at the Escuela Oliva.

Click on the link to watch a video about the Escuela Oliva in Esteli, Nicaragua:


For further information or interviews, please contact Laure Boisbouvier,

Marketing Manager J. Cortès ( or Olivier Mottrie, Marketing J.Cortès ( (0) 472 42 36 21)

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About J. Cortès

J. Cortès is a family run company with a passion for cigars. Cigars in all shapes and sizes. It's a never-ending story of dedication and craftsmanship that started in 1926. Don't smoke but enjoy! Our prime brands are J. Cortes, Country, Neos and Amigos. For the major European countries we have strong in-house sales teams; for other markets our brands are in the hands of our export managers and sold over 80 countries globally. In 2016 CEO Fredje fell in love with artisanal cigar company Oliva Cigars, based in the US and Nicaragua. A business marriage was set and it turned out to be the party of the year. The Cortès family business now spreads across two continents.

Don't smoke but enjoy!