Dufry North America signs seven-year Seattle-Tacoma airport deal

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Written by Charlotte Turner
Tuesday, 16 October 2012 09:11

The Port of Seattle has signed a new seven-year agreement with a joint venture partnership led by Dufry North America LLC to operate duty free and duty paid stores at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, beginning June 2013.


Dufry, which won a competitive bid to provide the service, plans to invest $2.9 million to build three new stores totalling nearly 7,000 square feet. Stores located in Concourse A and the Central terminal will offer an assortment of merchandise appealing to the domestic traveller, as well as international visitors.


A new 3,500 square-foot store in the South Satellite will serve the majority of international departures. Existing duty free stores will be demolished or remodelled for other uses.


Dufry-Seattle JV, which will operate the new Sea-Tac business, is composed of Dufry North America LLC and two Seattle-based small business partners – Randi Sibonga of Kalison Concessions, Inc. and Apryl Stewart of Skyview Concessions, Inc.


Seattle Tacoma Airport

[Above: Artist's impression of the new Dufry-Seattle JV duty free stores]



Both Seattle partners have decades of retail and duty-free experience in airports. Dufry North America LLC is a business unit of Dufry AG, an international travel retailer based in Basel, Switzerland.


Dufry Group hit the headlines recently when it confirmed that it is to acquire 51% of the Hellenic Duty Free Shops' travel retail operation for €200.5m ($257.8m). Dufry also has the option to acquire the remaining 49% of HDFS in four years time.


Seattle-Tacoma Airport says that travellers will experience affordable world-class shopping in the new stores for brand name perfumes, cosmetics, handbags and other luxury items.


This includes Washington brands such as Almond Roca, Fran’s Chocolates, Seattle Chocolates, Chukar Cherries, Aplets & Cotlets, Seabear Wild Salmon, Oberto Meat Snacks, Chateau Ste Michelle wines and Eddie Bauer apparel.



“Sea-Tac’s growing international traveller base also will enjoy a high-quality selection of fine spirits and tobacco products at duty-free prices," says the airport.


“This agreement not only enhances the experience of travelers, it creates tangible economic benefits for the entire state,” said Mark Reis, managing director-aviation for the Port of Seattle.


“We estimate that over the term of this agreement, these new stores will generate $175 million in sales and at least $50 million in revenue to the port by increasing duty free and retail sales by at least 60%.


“More importantly, the stores themselves will support approximately 85 jobs while supporting employment in numerous local and Washington suppliers of merchandise.”


Sea-Tac Airport is increasingly becoming an international departure point. In recent years, airlines have added new direct service to Paris, Frankfurt, Beijing, Reykjavik, Osaka, Dubai, and Tokyo.  Last week, Delta Airlines announced the introduction of new service to Shanghai.

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