South Korea’s Lotte Duty Free announced its new store at Australia’s Melbourne Airport, after outbidding and winning the business rights for the location in January.
Spanning 3,600 square metres, the company opened its store in the airport location previously operated by Switzerland’s Dufry and started operations last month, with the license valid until May 2033.
The Melbourne Airport currently store boasts 390 brands, including cosmetics, perfumes, liquor, tobacco and miscellaneous items.
Lotte Duty Free said it plans to expand the current store to 5,600 square meters by 2027, aiming for annual sales of KRW 300 billion (USD 235 million). Key in-store features will include a mixologist serving free cocktails, complimentary makeup tutorials, and skincare consultations.
“Lotte Duty Free, which has overcome the long tunnel of the pandemic, will embark on a new leap based on the successful operation of the Melbourne Airport store,” said the CEO of Lotte Duty Free Kim Ju-nam.
“We plan to develop our business territory by pioneering overseas hub airports and become a global platform.”
At Melbourne Airport, international traffic more than doubled in the past 12 months with 3,784 flights operating in May, compared to 1,740 in the same month last year, while the 744,868 international passengers was 87.6 percent of the 2019 figure, according to the airport.
Across all four terminals, the monthly total of 2,608,088 passengers represents 90.4 percent of the 2,885,517 travellers processed in May 2019, it said.
“Melbourne is widely regarded as Australia’s fashion capital and the Lotte brand will enhance that reputation with luxury items and travel exclusives that can only be found in duty-free,” said Melbourne Airport chief of retail Jai McDermott.
“Significant savings can be found across popular categories including alcohol, cosmetics, perfume and eyewear thanks to GST and tax savings, and Lotte’s loyalty program.”
Lotte Duty Free currently operates a total of 14 stores in six countries, including the international airports in Brisbane, Darwin and Wellington, as well as through a CBD location in both Melbourne and Sydney.
In 2022, Lotte Duty Free’s overseas business sales increased by about 340 percent compared to 2021, underlining the effect of global re-opening.