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 Iraq Duty Free invests in airport expansion and eyes new locations

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PostSubject: Iraq Duty Free invests in airport expansion and eyes new locations   Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:20 pm

IRAQ. Iraq Duty Free is to open a refurbished departures store at the Iraqi Airways-dedicated terminal at Baghdad International Airport by late November, complementing the new arrivals terminal store that opened in March.
The departures terminal was closed for refurbishment in August and will reopen with a modernised design, new space for key categories and a series of shop-in-shops across a total of 508sq m. Fashion & accessories will be a particular focus of the new-look store, renderings of which can be seen on this page.

Iraq Duty Free aims to upgrade the look of its retail real estate, led by the new store in departures at the Baghdad Airport Iraqi Airways terminal (P&C pictured above, confectionery below, liquor, tobacco and electronics bottom).

Iraq Duty Free General Manager Fouad Jabbour told The Moodie Davitt Report: “The first step was the Iraqi Airways arrivals terminal in Baghdad, which was completed in March. That went from 90sq m to 135sq m, with an offer driven by wines & spirits and confectionery. Now the departures terminal is being renovated, with the store trading in just 100sq m temporarily. When it’s open we’ll have a much improved, new layout with a new assortment.”
Elsewhere the retailer is increasing space for its Basra Airport arrivals store from around 15sq m to 36sq m, mirroring the upgrades in Baghdad in design terms. Basra Airport has also allocated a terminal for Emirates Airlines flights, where Iraq Duty Free is building a departures shop.
The reintroduction of liquor sales this year has helped boost the business. Jabbour said: “In the period from January to August 2018 we saw sales increasing by around +25% over the same period in 2017. Part of this was driven by the reintroduction of liquor, but also by P&C as the number one category, followed by confectionery. We expect full-year sales to grow by around +30%.”
Jabbour confirmed that the company plans to open stores at three more Iraqi airports (it is already present in Baghdad, Basra and Sulaimaniyah), with more details to emerge once contracts are signed.
He added: “Also, we are directing our business towards Iraq’s major airlines, starting with the programme onboard Al Nasser Wings by year-end. It offers an opportunity if travellers missed buying at the airport.”

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