Gunnar Heinemann hands DTRV President reins to Dr Jennifer Cords

By Luke Barras-hill |

President Dr Jennifer Cords and Managing Director Benjamin Dillmann. Cords will serve a two-year term to begin.

Dr Jennifer Cords has taken over the Presidency of German travel retail association Deutscher Travel Retail Verband (DTRV) from industry veteran Gunnar Heinemann, it has been announced.

The appointment, effective immediately, comes a matter of weeks after Cords was announced as President of the European Travel Retail Confederation (ETRC).

Gebr. Heinemann Co-owner Gunnar Heinemann, a founding member of DTRV that represents Germany’s DF&TR interests at a national level, stands down from the position amid elected changes to the association’s executive committee.

The election of the new executive committee took place at the organisation’s general meeting today in Hamburg.

Gunnar Heinemann has shaped the activities of DTRV for more than 30 years.


In changes to the DTRV executive committee, Benjamin Dillmann succeeds Dr Christian Breitzke as Managing Director.

The latter held the position for more than three decades and, alongside Gunnar Heinemann, was one of the founding members of DTRV.

Gunnar Heinemann commented: “I look back on eventful and great years at the DTRV. Commitment to our industry is very close to my heart and I am certain that the future of travel retail is stronger than ever.

“Travellers appreciate the privilege of shopping differently at airports or onboard ships. It has been part of the travel experience for over half a century, and it is important to strengthen the political dialogue about this special marketplace with its international character. I wish Dr Cords and Mr Dillmann great success in their new roles.”

Jennifer Cords stated: “I would like to thank the members for their confidence and I would especially like to thank Gunnar Heinemann and Dr Christian Breitzke on behalf of the entire association for their decades-long successful leadership. They have decisively shaped the DTRV in this time.”

Julie Lassaigne, Secretary General, ETRC.


Elsewhere, Karl-Heinz Dietrich, Head of Retail and Properties at Fraport AG, was elected as Vice President; and Markus Kohrs-Lichte, CEO of Borco-Marken Import Matthiesen GmbH & Co. KG, has replaced Kay Engelke-Engfeld as second Vice-President.

Cash Auditing is assumed by Tobias Baude, Head of Corporate & Legal Affairs at Imperial Brands PLC.

DTRV was known as the ‘Association of Customs and Tax Free Retail Companies in Germany’ when it was first established in 1987.

One of its central aims is to create uniform political and tax regulations that account for the interests of travellers and the industry.

The regional association continues to focus on issues such as the safe operation of retail environments at airports during the pandemic and the introduction of EU duty free and tax free on arrival.

DTRV’s members are sourced from the retail, aviation and shipping sectors, as well as the manufacturing industry.

It is a founding member of and retains close ties with the ETRC, which represents the interests of DF&TR across Europe.

Julie Lassaigne, Secretary General of ETRC, said: “ETRC coordinates the advocacy for the sector but it is crucial that our messages are relayed to decision makers at national level.

“Germany is a key member state in the European political landscape and therefore the role of DTRV is essentially to continue strengthening the industry in Germany and in the EU. I am very pleased that Jennifer Cords is taking on this responsibility for DTRV together with the Executive Committee, placing the association in an ideal position to help shape the market conditions of the future.”

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