Sustainable growth “rooted in strategic brand partnerships” says Bacha Coffee

By Benedict Evans |

Bacha Coffee

The Arch at Singapore Changi Airport T3.

Maranda Barnes and Taha Bouqdib grew TWG Tea into an internationally distributed luxury teahouse chain. Now, the duo is hoping to do the same for its sister brand, Bacha Coffee, with duty free and travel retail (DF&TR) a linchpin in bringing the concept to a global audience. 

Maranda Barnes, CCO of V3 Gourmet and Co-founder of TWG Tea, has been pivotal in the revival of Bacha Coffee – over a century after it was
first established.

The coffee store, which specialises in 100% pure Arabica beans, can trace its origins to the birth of the historic Dar el Bacha palace in Marrakesh in 1910. Fast forward to 2019 and it reopened its original location in Marrakesh. Under the direction of parent company V3, Bacha has since undergone significant expansion with international coffee rooms and boutiques opening across Europe and Asia.

By the end of 2023, it had clocked upwards of 19 retail locations in Singapore, Taipei, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Kuwait City, Doha, Marrakesh and Paris, among others.

“We work with select travel retail partners around the world to avail our offerings to a global audience, with over 14 touchpoints across airside and premium cruise spaces,” noted Barnes.

“Amidst this exponential expansion, we took the opportunity to finalise our footprint in all four Singapore Changi Airport terminals.”

Brewing connections

Its latest location at Singapore Changi Airport is, undoubtedly, a sign of things to come. The 400sq m coffee haven at T2 opened earlier this year and marks its fifth overall at the Singapore hub.

Holistically, Barnes says sights have now been set on establishing a foothold in more Asia travel hubs and expanding to more European cities, while building up its presence within travel retail.

“For the full year ahead, the strategy is to build upon that cadence to launch in more cities like Jakarta and Seoul by the summer, expand our presence in Europe before the year end, and widen the scope to encompass opportunities in the travel retail sector beyond just Singapore.”

Bacha Coffee

Maranda Barnes, CCO, V3 Gourmet. Right: Bacha offers a selection of travel retail exclusives, such as iced coffee variants.

The plan of action is evidently paying dividends. Bacha Coffee recently entered South Korea with Lotte Department Store under an exclusive franchise and distribution agreement following an 18-month negotiation.

Gourmet growth

Bacha Coffee also recently opened its first stores domestically in Taiwan and Dubai, though its 1,500 sq ft Taiwan store pales in comparison to its 7,000sq ft flagship store, The Arch, established in Changi’s T3 last year. It is here where its travel retail exclusives, such as gift boxes within the Expedition Coffee Collection, are available. Though it should be noted that the Coffee Room (F&B) experience is currently limited to city destinations only.

Barnes says the key to sustainable growth, both in travel retail and for Bacha Coffee’s wider operations, is rooted in strategic brand partnerships, product innovation and continually developing its assortment of high-quality coffees.

“We remain steadfast in our discernment to select only the finest locations and coffees that would cater to our audience suitably,” said Barnes. She notes the recent expansion of the Signature Nomad collection, which has carried through to travel retail, as a particular highlight.

“The three new entrants: Mombasa Song Coffee, Nairobi Rain Coffee and Volcan Azul Coffee, are each unique and delightful, and our first-of-its-kind Coffee Jelly allows guests to enjoy coffee in an excitingly innovative manner,” according to Barnes.

In terms of strategic partnerships, Bacha Coffee has welcomed a series of launches with the likes of Bulgari and Alessi, and says it will continue to grow its footprint with partners and select travel retail distributors worldwide.

A version of this feature first appeared in the TRBusiness March/April 2024 issue. Click here to read the ezine.

READ MORE: Changi Airport and Jewel welcome 20 stores as year-long promo launches

Middle East

MEADFA Conference 2024 ‘heading to Abu Dhabi on 17-19 November’

This year’s Middle East & Africa Duty Free Association (MEADFA) Conference will take...


DFWC Q1 2024 KPI Monitor indicates rise in duty free impulse purchases

Impulse purchasing within global duty free is on the rise, according to the latest Duty Free...

Asia & Pacific

Avolta details “bold and ambitious” goals to grow its APAC business

With a number of key developments coming to fruition, including its operations at Wuhan Tianhe...

image description

In the Magazine

TRBusiness Magazine is free to access. Read the latest issue now.

E-mail this link to a friend