Lotte Duty Free wins Melbourne Airport rights


Lotte Duty Free has inked a 10-year concession to operate duty-free shops at Melbourne Airport as part of its effort to further gain influence in Oceania as international travel resumes. 

The South Korean travel retail giant will begin operating its Melbourne Airport store on June 1. 

The Melbourne Airport Duty Free Shop will span 3592sqm with departure and arrival duty-free shops. The project marks Lotte Duty Free’s second-largest global airport operation after Singapore’s Changi Airport. The travel retailer also plans to increase the Melbourne Airport store’s footprint to 5800sqm in the future, eyeing annual sales of $243 million.

The Melbourne Airport store offers all items, including cosmetics, perfumes, alcohol and cigarettes, as well as fashion miscellaneous goods.

“Lotte Duty Free Melbourne Airport store … will be a key hub for Lotte Duty Free’s global business expansion and (duty-free) market recovery,” said Kim Ju-nam, CEO at Lotte Duty Free.

The company expanded into the Australia-New Zealand travel retail market in 2018 after acquiring five duty-free shops in the region from JR Duty Free. Since then, it has opened shops at Brisbane, Darwin, and Canberra airports, and it operates a store in New Zealand at Wellington Airport.

Lotte Duty Free has been expanding its global business gradually with store openings throughout the year, including its downtown stores in Sydney and in Vietnam’s Danang. The company has 13 stores in six international markets. 

The company said its overseas business saw 340 per cent increase in sales last year compared to 2021 as cross-border travel resumed. 

The company estimates the Australia-New Zealand duty-free market to have been about $US1 billion before the Covid-19 pandemic. The market has seen heated competition with major players such as Dufry, Heinemann and DFS.


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