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Exec Seat: Q&A with Al Bloom, CalExotics

Ariana Rodriguez

In 40 years, Al Bloom has accumulated a wealth of knowledge, accomplishments and accolades within the adult industry. Credited for being instrumental in establishing the adult home video industry and its legal protection by a unified entity — the Free Speech Coalition, Bloom later moved into the pleasure products side of the business when he joined CalExotics in 2003. Ten years later, Bloom continues to play an integral role at CalExotics as the newly minted director of business affairs for one of the industry’s most renown manufacturers. “Al Bloom is an icon in our industry,” said Susan Colvin, President and CEO of California Exotic Novelties. “He’s been an integral fighter for the platform of free speech and the laws surrounding the adult industry. He’s a senior member and invaluable executive of California Exotic Novelties. His intelligence, passion, dedication and endearing personality have made him a key element to our overall success.”

Jackie White, vice president of sales of California Exotic Novelties adds, “I’ve had the pleasure of working side-by-side with Al for the past 10 years at California Exotic Novelties and enjoyed every minute. The scope of Al’s expertise is felt in every aspect of the business. From marketing and sales to legal and business affairs, Al is a true master of his craft. He’s given critical insights in product development, orchestrated trade show booth construction, created comprehensive marketing campaigns, and developed many of the business strategies that brought CalExotics to where it is today.”

To me, the adult industry has been my life-long career. I am in my 43rd year and have worked in every facet of this industry. California Exotic Novelties is an opportunity to work with a very successful operation, and get to lend a hand to make it even better. —Al Bloom

How does it feel to be with CalExotics for a decade?

When you say “decade” it feels like a really long time! These last 10 years have literally flown by, and I attribute that to the pace of life at California Exotic Novelties. It honestly feels like only yesterday that I joined Susan, Jackie and all of the great people here.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

First off, I never considered it a job. To me, the adult industry has been my life-long career. I am in my 43rd year and have worked in every facet of this industry. California Exotic Novelties is an opportunity to work with a very successful operation, and get to lend a hand to make it even better. It’s a team here, and I find the sharing of my knowledge with everyone here most rewarding. To work on a daily basis with folks just starting out in this industry is a true honor.

What accomplishments are you most proud of?

Since I joined the company I have had a hand in hiring dozens of new members of our staff. I am most proud not only in their success, but in the way that every new employee has “fit” into the culture that Susan and Jackie have created here at California Exotic Novelties. That, and new perspectives on how to market the company and the great products we sell are most satisfying.

How has your role in the company evolved since you joined the team?

I started here as director of marketing by title, but over the years my role has expanded into many of the business and legal areas of our business. As we expand into new markets and territories around the world, I find that my ability to negotiate deals, protect our intellectual property, and work with new markets, has taken a large amount of my time. I am still a part of marketing, but it is now a team effort which allows me time to work with every department here with their own unique needs on a daily basis.

Discuss the new Senior Director of Business Affairs role?

My new title is indicative of how my role has evolved over the last 10 years. Susan and Jackie want each department to function in the areas of their expertise, without having to deal with the business and legal minutiae that seems to take time away from core responsibilities. When I first signed on 10 years ago, Susan gave me a list of duties. Sure, there were marketing items on the list, but it didn’t take long for me to realize that the list was stuffed with tasks that nobody here wanted to do! So, this new title really defines Al Bloom at California Exotic Novelties.

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