DFS Group Concludes 18 Month Transformation of North American Airport Operations with the Completion of San Francisco International-Airport Concession Upgrades

Global DFS Group Concludes 18 Month Transformation of North American Airport Operations with the Completion of San Francisco International-Airport Concession Upgrades SFO_VERT_RGB.jpg

SEPTEMBER 8, 2014, San Francisco – DFS Group, the world’s leading luxury travel retailer, has completed its third U.S. airport renovation at the San Francisco International Airport (“SFO”). Following the successful upgrades of DFS’s concessions at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport and the new Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (“LAX”), the newly renovated concessions at SFO focus on creating a premium airport retail environment by offering a curated selection of products and quality services and delivering a seamless shopping experience.

“With the concession upgrades at San Francisco International Airport, we are excited to be announcing the substantial completion of DFS’s 18-month renovation across our North American retail operations,” said Ms. Polly Nelson, Managing Director, North America. “As the sole duty-free operator at SFO, our vision is to meet the changing needs of travellers by elevating the customer experience, and delivering on our promise to create an unforgettable, delightful and memorable experience that captures the spirit and culture unique to San Francisco.”

At SFO, DFS is the sole duty-free operator and master concessionaire in the International Terminal, managing almost 58,000 square feet of concession space, with a broad portfolio of luxury brands and products across core categories of luxury including beauty & fragrances, and watches & jewelry. DFS also offers local souvenirs and gifts, including the world famous Ghirardelli chocolates, Thatcher’s Gourmet Popcorn and Napa Soap, luxurious soap products handmade in the Napa Valley.

Further enhancing DFS’s quality brand and product offerings and the promise for an experiential, seamless shopping experience, new stores opened include boutiques for Gucci, Coach, Burberry and Hermès. DFS also introduced Japanese beauty brand SK-II, jewelry and watches brand Chopard, and a new upmarket wine store featuring local California wine, including Screaming Eagle, Duckhorn, Diamond Creek, Hanzell, Stag’s Leap and Silver Oak.

In addition, DFS introduced its confectionary concept store, Sweetravels. Demonstrating the association of the product category “Sweet,” and the core theme of DFS’s businesses “Travel,” the first-of-its-kind concept for DFS features Sweetravels, a private San Francisco-themed label, covering various chocolate, cookies and candy products. Opened in June, “Sweetravels San Francisco” is customized to reflect the local culture, offering the city’s iconic chocolate brand, Ghirardelli, as well as classic confectionaries including Gummy Bears, Jelly Beans and Chocolate Covered Oreos. Framed by a colorful polka dot pattern, Sweetravels presents a whimsical retail environment that promises to stimulate and delight customers.

In addition to the upgraded features and new stores at SFO, DFS also introduced a new logo design featuring San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate Bridge:

Mr. John L. Martin, Director of San Francisco International Airport congratulated DFS. He said:

“San Francisco welcomes nearly 17 million visitors annually and in the last 20 years, has been named 19 times as the number one city to visit in the United States by Condé Nast. Most of these visitors pass through our airport, and we are pleased to continue working with DFS as we elevate and develop innovative ways to improve the traveler’s experience at SFO.”

According to the San Francisco Tourism Association (SFTA), San Francisco saw about 400,000 more visitors in 2013, a year-on-year visitor increase of 2.4%. Asia represented the second largest overseas visitor market to San Francisco and is growing rapidly. Today, more than half of the revenue generated from DFS’s SFO concessions comes from Asian visitors to the city.

Mr. Joe D'Alessandro, President and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association (SFTA), praised the completion of the renovation. He said:

“Tourism remains a vitally important contributor to San Francisco’s overall growth and development, welcoming nearly 17 million visitors who spent a record-breaking $9.38 billion last year. DFS’s newly renovated concessions at the San Francisco International Airport reflects the city’s objectives of enriching travellers’ shopping experience and enhancing the local economy by positioning San Francisco as a desirable international destination for travellers from across the globe.”