Schäfer Airport Retail to build new distribution centre to support expansion

By Andrew Pentol |

John Woodhouse, Managing Partner of Schäfer Airport Retail.

Schäfer Airport Retail has signalled its intention to expand the company’s global store footprint after buying land and securing planning permission to build a new 8,000sq m distribution centre in Germany.

Situated at Willroth Business Park, neighbouring a major Haribo warehouse and adjacent to the A3 — one of Germany’s main arterial roads — the distribution centre will include offices to headquarter the Schäfer business.

The planned specification for the building, which will be located an hour from Frankfurt Airport and just 30 minutes from Cologne and Bonn Airports, will ensure strong green credentials with provision for the use of renewable energy.


When appropriate, Schäfer will apply for German sustainable building certification, which places equal emphasis on the environment, people and commercial viability. Furthermore, the distribution centre is being built on a brownfield site, which was a former slate mine.

TRBusiness was the sole travel retail media in attendance for the opening of Schäfer Airport Retail’s new Düsseldorf Airport stores at the beginning of last year.

Schäfer Airport Retail, which operates consumer electronics stores under its Move brand at a number of key German airports, including Düsseldorf, Cologne, and Stuttgart, said the distribution centre project was expected to be fully complete by the end of 2022.

John Woodhouse, Managing Partner of Schäfer Airport Retail said: “Some people might say this is not the right time to make such a bold move to build an ambitious distribution centre, but we believe the opposite. We firmly believe in a strong future for travel retail, despite the painful current difficulties for the channel brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The timing for the completion of our project should mirror the start of meaningful recovery and gives us a strong platform from which to achieve our ambitions for scaling the business and making acquisitions to support expansion.”

He added: “The new building is an important long-term strategic move for us towards achieving a more efficient distribution operation, which we will need to continue the growth of the business. Our ambitions stretch way beyond the German market. We believe this project will lay the foundations for us to move into multiple overseas markets, as well as into airport retail in other European countries.”

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