DDF, Avolta, Mondelēz, Nestlé bolster APTRA Conference as Gold Partners

By Luke Barras-hill |

Sunil Tuli, President, APTRA: “The astonishing scale of India’s forecast growth in tourism is complemented by the ambition of the Indian government to deliver the supporting aviation infrastructure, creating a unique incentive for delegates to ensure that India is a priority in their business planning.”

[UPDATE] The Asia Pacific Travel Retail Association (APTRA) India 2024 Conference has announced four Gold Partners.

Avolta, Dubai Duty Free, Mondelēz and Nestlé have confirmed their support at the regional association’s first major conference this year, which takes place over two days in Delhi on 20-21 March at the Pullman New Delhi Aerocity hotel.

Agreements are being finalised with several other partners, adds APTRA.

As reported, Delhi Duty Free was last week revealed as Platinum Host Partner.

READ MORE: Indian travel retail focus for Delhi APTRA Conference 

Attendees to the event will hear from a lineup of speakers, which to date include several senior retail executives such as Ashish Chopra, CEO, Delhi Duty Free Services; Ramesh Cidambi, Chief Operating Officer, Dubai Duty Free; Vijay Talwar, Chief Commercial Officer, Avolta; and Sunil Tuli, CEO, King Power Group (Hong Kong) and President of APTRA.

The conference will spotlight narratives including the role of travel retail in India’s surging aviation growth and the rise of the all-important Indian consumer, alongside an analysis of core product categories and the influence of omni-channel services and sustainability.

The Indian government’s ‘Vision 2040’, which carries ambitions for aviation infrastructure investment and airport expansion to rival hubs in the GCC, and what that means for duty free and travel retail will be considered.

APTRA President Sunil Tuli said: “We are delighted by the support from so many organisations for the APTRA India 2024 Conference, sharing our belief in the unparalleled opportunity for travel retail in India.

APTRA Delhi Conference 2024

An opening cocktail reception will take place on the evening of 19 March ahead of the conference programme running on 20-21 March.

“At its conference in October 2023, the Federation of Associations in India Tourism and Hospitality reported that the country’s tourism industry is set to deliver US$3trillion in GDP by 2047, with 100 million foreign tourist arrivals, 20 billion domestic tourism visits and more than 200 million direct and indirect tourism-driven jobs.

“The astonishing scale of India’s forecast growth in tourism is complemented by the ambition of the Indian government to deliver the supporting aviation infrastructure, creating a unique incentive for delegates to ensure that India is a priority in their business planning.”

Quick update

In a statement, Nestlé highlighted the strategic importance of India to Nestlé ITR, as the region has been a long-term focus for development and investment.

“We applaud APTRA for committing to a conference that highlights the rapidly growing importance of India and the Indian traveller to our channel,” said Stewart Dryburgh, General Manager for Nestlé ITR .

“For this reason, we are honoured to support APTRA as part of our commitment to fostering innovation and collaboration in the region between operators, retailers and brands to better shape the future of travel retail in both this dynamic country and the wider region,” continued Dryburgh.

India is one of the world’s fastest-growing major economies.

Bolstered by a robust recovery from Covid-19, India “recorded a gross domestic product (GDP) expansion of 6.1 per cent in the March quarter. The growth moved up to 7.8 per cent in the June quarter and was 7.6 per cent in the September quarter,” according to a recent article from the Economic Times.

Nicola Wells,  Head of Category Development will be updating delegates at the conference on Nestlé’s ambitions within India.

The article draws on statistics published by India’s National Statistical Office (NSO), whose findings are backed by a separate report from the Office of Chief Economic Adviser, titled ‘The Indian economy — A review’.

The report’s authors indicated the Indian economy has the potential to achieve a growth rate at or above 7% for FY24; the most optimistic of these findings suggest India could reach $5bn GDP, which would make it the third-largest economy globally within three years.

“We see India becoming a significant player in our future and a growth engine for travel retail. Within that, the wider food category will be a key driver of that growth as it is such a critically important sector to the Indian population,” noted Dryburgh, adding: “Nestlé ITR has enjoyed fantastic growth in this region in recent years thanks both to the appeal of global brands and to the strength of our strategic partnerships with retailers such as Mumbai Duty Free, Delhi Duty Free, Avolta and Flemingo.”

The company will also be sponsoring a refreshment break during the two-day conference where delegates will be offered a Kitkat chocolate and complementary Nescafe Roastery Coffee.

Registration is available at a cost of US$600 per delegate and APTRA is offering a Preferential  15% discount on room rates at the Pullman Aerocity and Novotel Aerocity.

N.B. This is an updated version of an original article that appeared on TRBusiness.com on 11 January 2024.

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