Osborne targets GTR growth from luxury Spanish gastronomic brands

By Faye Bartle |

Osborne

Cathy Rolland (left) at the TFWA World Exhibition & Conference in 2022.

Osborne is leveraging the appeal of Cinco Jotas ibérico ham and the organic Riofrío Caviar to further accelerate the “remarkable” sales trajectory of its travel retail business in 2024.

The travel retail division of Osborne “soared beyond all anticipations” in 2023 to emerge as “the pinnacle performer within the company,” according to Global Travel Retail (GTR) Manager Cathy Rolland.

She asserted: “Surpassing initial forecasts, our sales trajectory has been nothing short of remarkable. Despite the lingering shadows of the pandemic, we’ve not only bounced back but flourished, achieving sales figures that eclipse pre-crisis levels.”

Nordés gin has been a driving force behind the sales surge, buoyed by the introduction of the Gold Gin 999.9 (a super-premium gin flavoured with Spanish tangerines).

And the result has been supported by the interest in Cinco Jotas ibérico ham.

“These products have captured the imagination of travellers and enthusiasts alike, propelling us to unprecedented heights within the industry,” explained Rolland.

Currently, one third of Osborne’s GTR business revenue stems from food items, and expectations for growth in the channel in 2024 are “high”, particularly for Cinco Jotas and the organic Riofrío Caviar.

Building luxury gastronomic brands

Key regions pegged for expansion in GTR are Asia, the Americas and the Middle East.

“Our primary international markets for Cinco Jotas are currently China and the US,” said Rolland. “We perceive substantial opportunities for travellers in Asia and the Americas, encompassing both airport and cruise channels.

“With regards to Riofrío Caviar, we have recently introduced it in select major airports across Spain, yielding satisfactory outcomes. This product inherently demands explanation and information for travellers. Our aim is to extend our presence to the prominent flagship airports across Europe and Asia and luxury cruise destinations.”

She added: “We foresee that a substantial portion of our growth in the upcoming months and years will stem from the luxury gastronomic brands within our portfolio.”

Osborne

Left: Cathy Rolland. Right: Riofrío Caviar has recently been introduced in select major airports across Spain.

Osborne says the primary challenge for growing its food brands in travel retail lies in retailing ‘delicate’ products, some of which require refrigeration both in-store and during shipment.

“Additionally, obtaining certification to sell Iberian ham and caviar presents another hurdle,” said Rolland.

“Cultural spending habits vary when it comes to luxury food items. As for caviar, it’s a highly seasonal product with a concentration of sales during the Christmas period, for which we can adapt through pop-up listings.”

In terms of what retailers could to help pave the way for the company to reach its full potential in the channel, Rolland points to personalisation.

She said: “Travel retail operators are instrumental in facilitating the customisation of spaces within airports and cruise terminals, a particularly crucial aspect for brands like Cinco Jotas and Riofrío.”

The company is unveiling a packaging redesign and new overall visual identity for Cinco Jotas in Q2, although the details are still largely under wraps.

“The fresh design embodies the luxurious essence of the brand and the unparalleled quality of the ham, exuding sophistication, elegance, and a contemporary flair – a must-have for travel retail flagships,” revealed Rolland.

“We look forward to announcing soon some thrilling expansion agreements with our partners, which are currently in the negotiation phase.”

This  feature first appeared in the February 2024 issue of TRBusiness magazine.

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