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There was a very interesting vibe permeating the 2015 TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes this year. Despite less than stellar growth figures – not to mention the devastating floods that crippled the city of Cannes only weeks before the global gathering – there was a distinct feeling of optimism throughout the week, almost as if the industry was searching for ways to generate excitement at the point of sale – and finding it.
Final attendance figures were down slightly on last year, although the number of buyers were up. I found the show to be quite busy. One interesting bit of news is that Peter Mohn’s m1nd-set has joined forces with Generation Research to combine their respective strengths in market analysis to create a new research entity called m1nd-set Generation. The newly combined company offers research services, marketing intelligence & consulting. Peter is well-known in the Americas, and has been providing statistical research for the ASUTIL Association for several years.
The business week began on a high note with TFWA’s usual world-class conference. Peter Long, joint CEO of the world’s largest travel and tourism company, German-based TUI Group, presented a penetrating analysis of how to build a company with long-term sustainability in today’s challenging market, while Rudy Giuliani, New York City’s Mayor during the 9/11 terror attack on the U.S., presented a lively address on leadership, before delving into a bi-partisan political tangent. TMI’s team presents an in-depth report on the Opening conference, and gives an overview on highlights from the business, networking and charity events that took place over the rest of the week.
In other news, Dufry Group, which on Oct. 23 reported that it had acquired 95% ownership of World Duty Free Group‘s share capital, last week unveiled a new organizational structure and five new members for its Group Executive Committee. See report on page 1, 5.
In a not unsurprising development, Carnival Corporation & plc. has formed a joint venture with China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) and China Investment Corporation (CIC) to launch a multi-ship domestic cruise brand in the Chinese market. The development of China’s cruise market holds so much potential that the signing in London was attended by both British Prime Minister David Cameron and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Go to page 2 for more details.
In a Cannes week filled with many memorable product launches, one of the most striking was held by Shiseido Group, who previewed its new NARS Steven Klein Holliday collection and unveiled its first ever Travel Retail exclusive collection for the rapidly growing makeup brand. Page 3.
PEOPLE NEWS. Congratulations to Paul Topping, currently a Director/Board Member of Flemingo International. Paul was honored with the life time achievement award at the 2015 Frontier Awards in Cannes last week. In other developments, Jada Portela has left Starboard to join Edrington WEBB; Antonio Suarez leaves Pernod Ricard to join Beam Suntory Global Travel Retail, and Jose Chao has been named VP Sales USA for Imperial Brands. Inc.