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U.S. airports and concessions were squarely in the news this week, with new contracts, new openings and new terminals all in the headlines.
But first, Interbrand issued its respected brand valuation survey this month, showing that luxury and retail remain the fastest growing sector for the second consecutive year. While the top 10 brands are dominated by tech, nine luxury brands with a big presence in travel retail made it into the top 100 — and the list is even more robust when we add in some other popular TR brands like Jack Daniel’s and Heineken. Gucci was especially emblematic of the sector’s growth-with a 23% increase in brand value over last year. See details on page 1.
AIRPORTS AND CONCESSIONS
NEW YORK: Delta unveiled its first new concourse at LaGuardia International Airport on Tuesday. The 105,000-square-foot showpiece in what will become Delta’s Terminal C, features modern customer amenities, state-of-the-art architecture, more spacious gate areas and a connected terminal system. The terminal also features dining from OTG and new retail from Stellar Partners. Full story on page 2.
NEWARK/INDIANAPOLIS: This week North American travel retailer Hudson Group announced it has been awarded new duty free contracts at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) and opened its first new stores at Indianapolis International Airport (IND). In Indianapolis, Hudson unveiled its first six stores this month, under a new 10-year contract announced earlier this year. The concepts include well-known travel and luxury retail brands FAO Schwarz, which opened on Oct. 22 by surprising passengers with a fun-filled day of games and activities. See page 3.
PHILADELPHIA: Philadelphia Airport also refreshed its retail offerings this week, with the opening of four fashion retail brands from Stellar Partners with MarketPlace Development: Chico’s, White House Black Market, and Soma together in one place; plus trending activewear brand, Marika. A Stellar Books shop was also opened. More details on page 4.
SPEAKING OF TOYS…
The reborn FAO Schwarz has broadened its retail footprint beyond its U.S. base to include a global audience using travel retail much like a launching pad. With a flagship store opening in Beijing, China, earlier this year and London and Dublin openings scheduled for October 22 and 30 respectively, the potential for the FAO Schwarz experiential toy brand in global travel retail is clear, says exclusive global channel distributor SKYlink, which has very high expectations for the brand.
Full story on page 3.
With sustainability currently top of the agenda for many businesses, travel retail display management company Concourse is working to drive positive change with its brand and retailer clients.
During Dutch Design Week 2019 on October 25, Concourse was present at the signing of a Memoranda of Understanding to formalize an alliance marking an official partnership under which Concourse will now be introducing Niaga ECOR circular panels as a sustainable material in the design of brand activations and store builds in the Global Travel Retail industry. Story on page 4.
Disney and L Brands veteran Lisa Baldzicki has joined Starboard Cruise Services as Chief Merchandising Officer. Page 1.
Elections for President of TFWA will take place in December. If you are interested in running for this office, see note on page 4.
SUPPLY SIDE: SPIRITS
Heineken Global Duty Free has reported double-digit sales volume growth versus 2018 in its duty free business (Cruise, Ferries and Inflight). The growth is driven by increased distribution for its portfolio of over 250 brands. Page 5.
Royal Salute has unveiled a new 25 Year Old Scotch whisky, The Treasured Blend, available exclusively in airports and duty free stores beginning in November. Page 5