Dubai Duty Free records over US$1 billion in sales in eight months

By Faye Bartle |

Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free.

Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free.

Dubai Duty Free has achieved an 104% increase in sales for the first eight months of 2022, compared to the same period in 2021, with turnover hitting US$1.06 billion.

The achievement places the operation firmly on track to reach its sales target of US$1.6 billion by the end of the year.

“We have had a fantastic year so far and I am pleased that we have recovered over 80% of our business from January to August, whereas the passenger recovery is about 67% of 2019 levels,” said Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free.

“We have now recalled almost 2,000 of our laid off staff and our current staffing levels are getting closer to the pre-Covid figures.

“We are heading into a busy sales period for the last quarter and with the upcoming FIFA World Cup starting in November, this will further boost traffic to Al Maktoum International Airport (AMIA) which will handle an additional 30 return flights to Doha during the World Cup period,” added McLoughlin.

“The opening of the new Fashion outlets has resulted in a big increase in the category and we are also continuing with our ongoing retail developments at Dubai International Airport (DXB). All in all, we are confident that we will reach our target at the end of December, which also marks our 39th anniversary.”

Perfumes, Liquor, Gold, Cigarettes & Tobacco and Electronics retained the top five category positions with Perfumes showing an 89% increase amounting to US$186 million.

Furthermore, Liquor, which accounted for 16% of total sales, reached US$168 million.

Gold & Precious Stones shop in Concourse D.

Gold & Precious Stones shop in Concourse D.

Sales of Gold shot up by an impressive 181% over the same period last year, with sales amounting to US$106 million.

In addition, Cigarettes & Tobacco reached US$98 million and accounted for 9% of sales while Electronics rose by 79% reaching sales of US$81 million.

Louis Vuitton in Concourse B.

Louis Vuitton in Concourse B.

As McLoughlin referenced, a notable increase was seen in the Fashion category, which shot up from US$41 to US$130 million during the eight month time period.

According to a statement released by the retailer, ‘this increase can be credited to Dubai Duty Free’s recent openings of big-name fashion brands including Louis Vuitton, Dior and Cartier’.

Cartier in Concourse B.

Cartier in Concourse B.

Along with Chanel and Gucci, these leading names are now among the top five luxury brands at Dubai Duty Free.

Meanwhile, online sales reached US$29 million and accounted for 3% of total sales in the first eight months.

Dior in Concourse B.

Dior in Concourse B.

As part of the eight-month sales figures update, Dubai Duty Free reported that Departures sales in DXB and AMIA, which account for 88% of total sales, show an 115% increase over the same period last year reaching US$927 million, while Terminal 2 Departure sales are up by 59%.

‘Meanwhile sales across all Concourses have registered significant increases with overall sales in Concourse B up 35% over last year, mainly due to the luxury boutiques,’ said the statement.

Looking to the next 18 months, we can expect to see a ‘full renovation’ of the Liquor and Tobacco offer in Concourse B.

Looking at staffing, there are now 4,407 employees at the company, including 58 new Emirati recruits.

Notable diary dates on the horizon include the Dubai Duty Free International Weekend at Newbury Racecourse on 16-17 September; the 29th edition of the Dubai Duty Free Golf World Cup on 24- 25 November; the Dubai Duty Free Sailing League Regatta from 30 November to 3 December; and the Dubai Duty Free 39th Anniversary, which the operation will celebrate on 20 December.

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