Retail in Asia

In Shops

Hyundai Department Store operates new duty free in Seoul

Hyundai Department Store

South Korea’s customs office said on 28th November that one of the country’s leading department store chains, Hyundai Department Store, has won the license to operate a duty-free shop in downtown Seoul.

SEE ALSO : Hyundai Department Store Duty Free takes over Doota Duty Free

Hyundai Department Store, the sole candidate, was picked to operate the duty-free outlet at Dongdaemun, northeastern Seoul, according to the Korea Customs Service. The site was previously operated by conglomerate Doosan Group,

Hyundai Department Store has operated a duty-free shop at its Trade Center branch in the affluent Gangnam Ward in southern Seoul since 2018.

“We plan to stabilize the duty-free business by bringing a synergy effect by operating two outlets in both southern and northern Seoul,” said a company official who asked not to be named.

Earlier this month, Hyundai clinched a five-year deal to rent the duty-free shop site from Doosan for 10 billion won (US$8.5 million) per year.

Hyundai Department Store said it plans to officially open its Dongdaemun outlet by the first quarter of next year.

The duty-free shop business is suffering an industrywide slump, mainly because the number of Chinese tourists has fallen sharply since late 2016 due to a diplomatic row with Beijing over the installment of a US missile defense system in South Korea.

In 2015, seven companies, including retail giants HDC Shilla Duty Free and Hanwha Galleria Timeworld, vied for four licenses to open duty-free shops in Seoul and the southeastern port city of Busan.

SEE ALSO : Hyundai Department store’s profit drops

But this year, Hanwha Group and Doosan Group decided to pull out of the duty-free business by closing down their Seoul outlets amid growing losses and heated competition.

(Source: Korea Herald)