a history of

Puff Discount Tobacco

Longtime friends, Bob Busche and Jim Kearney, founded Puff Discount Tobacco in May of 1998. The two friends graduated together from Churchill Area High School now Woodland Hills. They started Puff as a way to earn some additional income while keeping full time jobs and starting to raise their families. Bob was employed by Betson Distributing as a long time salesman in the gaming and amusement industry. Jim was employed fulltime in physical therapy for Nova Care.

Photo of Bob Busche (left) and Jim Kearney (right), co-founders of Puff Discount TobaccoWith no prior knowledge or experience in the retail industry, the first three years in the business were incredibly challenging. Despite the challenges, the two friends opened three stores in three years. The first of the Western Pennsylvania outlets opened was in Braddock Hills, the second in Penn Hills and the third in Glassport. All three of these stores are still open today due in a large part to the loyalty of their customers.

Bob and Jim attribute the success of their stores to their long time and dedicated employees. Steve Busche, now the general manger and purchasing agent for the company, has been with Puff from the very first day their first shop opened for business 24 years ago. Johanna Fey, manager of the Penn Hills store has been with the company for over 19 years. Tim Townsend, a longtime friend of Bob and Jim’s joined the company in 2002. Tim started as store manager and now is in charge of the company’s Human Resource Department. Bob’s brother, Scott Busche joined the company in 2008 as IT manager for the entire company’s computer needs.

One of the company’s main philosophies was to always promote within the company. Every manager today that is working for Puff started as a sales clerk with the company. Without these dedicated employees, the company would have never been able to grow as successfully. A big thanks to Braddock Hills Mgr. Barb Ferraiuolo, Penn Hills Mgr. Johanna Fey, Glassport Mgr. Terri Vietmeier, Plum Mgr. Pam Perman, Mckeesport Mgr. Jill  Opfar, North Versailles Mgr. Christopher Anderson, Monroeville Mgr. Brittany Bard, Kittanning Mgr. Roger Mack, Mckeesport II Mgr. Deborah Beisler, Monroeville (Haymaker) Mgr. Dawn Freidland, North Apollo Mgr. Doris Ohler ,  Punxsutawney Mgr. Shirley Langham, and Connellsville Mgr. Courtney Pring for contributing to the company’s progress.

Today Puff Discount Tobacco has 13 stores serving Western Pennsylvania and over 80 full and part time employees.

We look forward to serving you,

Robert Busche


Puff Discount receives orders on every Tuesdays for all 13 stores.  We strive to always provide the freshest and most complete line of tobacco related products in the industry.

Our philosophy is to keep your favorite product on our shelves. So, if you do not see an item that you are looking for, all you need to do as is ask any Puff employee and we will make every effort to order that item and keep it in stock for you!