Lagardère Travel Retail has signed a 10-year contract with Monument Books to extend its Discover stores footprint into Cambodia.
The gifts and souvenir store concept will now launch in several travel locations across the country.
Discover has a “highly flexible” brand design that can be adapted to reflect the local culture surrounding each store location.
Described as a “playground for travellers”, each store aims to offer a strong sense of place with local, high-quality and affordable gifts and souvenirs.
The brand is currently active in 15 countries, four of which are franchisees. In total, there are more than 50 stores globally.
Monument Books has opened its first store, Discover Siem Reap, at the Angkor Wildlife & Aquarium in Siem Reap.
The site is the first aquarium and zoo in Cambodia, and is said to provide sanctuary for endangered species from across the country and the Gulf of Thailand. It offers a number of education programmes to raise conversation awareness.
Discover stores: ‘localness’ key
The store’s product assortment includes a curated range of Khmer craft gifts and souvenirs. The range spans Krama scarves, stone carvings, ceramics and traditional jewellery.
Seasonal dried fruit, the world-famous Kampot-terroir pepper and Cambodian cashew nut cookies are also available.
Natural essential oils and herbal cosmetics complete the product range.
The local product range is reflected in the store design, which features large visuals of key Siem Reap tourist attractions
According to a report from Lagardère Travel Retail based on insights from airport and brand partners, ‘localness’ is best embodied through a local product assortment and an understanding of the market.
The Discover store is located close to Angkor Wat, the millennium-old temple from the Khmer Empire.
More widely, Siem Reap offers sightseeing opportunities from colonial buildings and traditional markets, to floating villages on the Tonle Sap Lake. The provincial capital also offers numerous cultural and culinary attractions.
Lagardère Travel Retail kicked off its Monument Books franchise partnership in 2017.
In addition to the Discover stores, Monument also manages three relay stores under a franchise model across Phnom Penh and Siem Reap International airports.
Lagardère Travel Retail saw sales climb 32.4% for the first half of its 2023 fiscal year. Recurring EBITDA stood at €92 million with operating margin at 4%.
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