DDF on track to hit Dh5.3 billion sales in 2011

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By Issac John  www.khaleejtimes.com

DUBAI — Dubai Duty Free said on Thursday it is on track to post an year-end sales value of an estimated Dh5.3 billion with its nine-month sales to the end of September rising 16.4 per cent to hit Dh3.78 billion compared to the same period in 2010.

Perfumes retained the No. 1 category as sales rose to Dh548 million while sales of gold rose by 24 per cent to reach Dh432 million in the nine-month period.

Other notable increases were seen in electronics, which rose by 21 per cent to Dh296 million, cosmetics, which rose by 22 per cent with sales of Dh229 million while confectionery rose by nine per cent to Dh284 million accounting for eight per cent of total revenue.

Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman of DDF said  so far he was pleased that DDF’s penetration level and average spend has been consistently high. “We are heading into a busy sales period for the last quarter and 
are optimistic that we will have a 
record year.”

Dubai Duty Free, which first opened for business on the 20th December 1983, celebrates its 28th anniversary this year and the operation has plans in place to make this a memorable occasion. For starters, the anniversary day on December 20th will be marked by a 25 per cent discount on a wide range of merchandise, for what has become an annual celebration for all passengers travelling through the 
airport.

“We started this promotion when we celebrated our 20th anniversary in 2003 and offered shoppers discount for that day,” said McLoughlin.

“Sales soared to a record high on that day and proved to be so successful that we have continued to mark our anniversary day in this way ever since. We see this as our way of saying thank you to our customers who have helped Dubai Duty Free to achieve such fantastic sales results over the years.”

The company was also buoyed by record sales figures (excluding 20 December anniversary days) during the Eid holiday period in August 25, which saw a new daily sales record posted, of $5.93 million. This was followed a day later by the second highest day’s sales ever of $5.87 million, and the third highest day’s sales came on 30 August, with $5.81 million.

Each of these surpassed the previous record of $5.34 million achieved on 30 December 2010. The highest ever total came on the company’s 25th anniversary, when sales hit $20 million on 20 December 2008.

The consistent surge in duty free sales has been abetted by a steady growth in passenger traffic through  Dubai Airports. This year’s first-half passenger traffic rose 8.9 per cent to 24.6 million, marking its busiest six-month period in its 50-year history. Dubai International, the world’s fourth busiest airport for international passenger traffic, recorded over four million passengers in August. This was eighth month in a row passenger traffic was crossing the four million mark thanks to a diversion of tourist traffic from the troubled spots of the Middle East.

According to Dubai Airports ten year traffic forecast for Dubai International and Dubai World Central-Al Maktoum International passenger and cargo traffic will increase at an average annual growth rate of 7.2 per cent and 6.7 per cent respectively, outperforming industry projections for average annual growth of five per cent globally. By 2020 passenger numbers will reach 98.5 million and cargo volumes will top 4.1 million tonnes. More info

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