May 1 2018  |  Retailers

Duty Free Americas to open seven WHSmith stores at RIOgaleão Airport

By Mary Jane Pittilla

Duty Free Americas is set to open seven WHSmith news and book stores at RIOgaleão Tom Jobim International Airport in August – WHSmith’s South American debut.

RIOgaleão is Rio de Janeiro’s main international airport, serving more than 16 million passengers a year.

The stores will combine WHSmith’s latest store design – which aims to provide a contemporary look and feel – with elements of localization reflecting Rio de Janeiro’s cultural status, the company said.

The stores, located across international and domestic departures as well as the main entrance areas, will offer newspapers, books, magazines, travel accessories, souvenirs, confectionery and drinks. Tailored ranges will also be carried.

Leandro Dantas, Head of Commercial, RIOgaleão Airport, said: “Bringing strong international brands synonymous with their categories is key to our development strategy. We are therefore very pleased to be bringing WHSmith, with its highly recognizable international brand and expertise in news, books and convenience airport retailing to Brazil.

He continued: “We also welcome Duty Free Americas with their strong operational capability in this market as an important partner concessionaire to RIOgaleão. We recognized from their tender submission that a partnership between WHSmith and Duty Free Americas would provide a compelling combination of an international brand with a specialism in airport convenience retail and a local partner with market knowledge and a strong operating platform.

“We look forward to working with the team to open excellent stores which will appeal to our passengers and to revenue growth from the long-term partnership to come.”

Louis de Bourgoing, International Chairman, WHSmith, added: “This is a significant win for us as we prepare to open our first stores in South America. We look forward to working with the team at RIOgaleão and to open seven stores in an airport with strong development plans and potential for passenger growth.

“We are also delighted to enter this new territory working in partnership with Duty Free Americas. As we continue to grow our international business, we are confident this will be the beginning of a long and successful partnership.”

Leon Falic, President, Duty Free Americas, added: “We are looking forward to working with the teams from RIOgaleão and from WHSmith to open these seven specialist convenience stores. We believe the partnership with WHSmith opens up opportunities across the region.

“The Brazilian airport market alone has 140 million passengers and we believe our partnership will provide productive stores which will appeal to those passengers and create value for airport operators.”

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