August 21 2018  |  Retailers

Fraport USA awarded revamped contract for Nashville International Airport retail concessions program

By Hibah Noor

Fraport and Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority officials gather for the signing ceremony awarding Fraport USA the contract
to develop and manage the concessions program at Nashville International Airport (BNA)

Fraport USA has been selected by Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA) to manage and develop a new-format concessions program for Nashville International Airport (BNA).

The company said it planned to enhance the shopping and dining experience for more than 14 million passengers in one of the fastest-growing airports in North America and in a top tourist destination.

MNAA's new concessions model will allow for independent, local ownership of the concessions and retail shops at BNA.

Fraport USA won the tender to develop and manage the airport’s retail and dining areas following a rigorous selection process.

Expected to begin in early 2019, the 10-year agreement covers the design, construction, lease and management of more than 130,000 square feet of concessions space in the airport’s four concourses.

“We’re excited to begin working with the airport authority and look forward to creating a breakthrough program that elevates the customer experience at Nashville International Airport,” said Ben Zandi, President and CEO, Fraport USA.

“This is music city, and we have set our sights high in terms of bringing that star quality to the travel experience. We aim to set a new standard for passenger satisfaction at BNA.”

The program will offer an exciting mix of the best local to global brands and celebrate Nashville’s rich cultural heritage and thriving music and arts scene.

Doug Kreulen, President and CEO, Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority, said: “Our goal is to provide travelers in and out of Nashville International Airport with exceptional customer service in an airport that reflects our city’s warm and welcoming environment, and we believe this new partnership with Fraport USA will do just that.

“This new developer model will allow local restaurateurs and retailers to independently own and manage their brands at BNA. Our passengers will be greeted by the authentic sight, sound and flavor of Music City the moment they step foot in BNA.”

MNAA's previous concessions model generally did not allow for independent, local ownership of the concessions and retail shops at BNA.

In a change from the current practice, the new concessions model will also feature what is known as street pricing, meaning airport concessions will be priced at a level equivalent to what a consumer/passenger would find for the item at a similar location outside the airport.

The concession contract includes the design, construction, lease and management of approximately 69,000 square feet of concessions space throughout BNA.

Fraport will lease space to local business owners, who will independently manage their restaurants and shops, providing customers with the same experience at BNA they would receive at one of their locations anywhere in Nashville.

"We want BNA to reflect our great city in every way possible, and we're proud to say that this new concessions agreement will serve to create a more authentic Nashville experience at the airport," added MNAA’s Kreulen. "The moment you arrive at BNA, we want it clear that this is Music City, with the sights, sounds and tastes the Nashville brand implies. This new model will amplify the experience for travelers, while also providing new opportunities for chefs, restaurateurs and entrepreneurs of all kinds."

The new program is also designed to increase opportunities for disadvantaged businesses. MNAA has set a goal for 22.6% involvement of Airport Concessions Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (ACDBE), but the new concessions agreement will ultimately produce ACDBE participation of 40% over the life of the contract.

Leasing and construction will begin February 1, 2019, with new restaurants and retail shops expected to open later that year.

With more than 14.9 million passengers each year, Nashville International Airport is the 33rd busiest airport in the US and one of the fastest growing.

BNA is served by 15 airlines and offers 460 daily flights. Nashville International Airport provides non-stop air service to more than 65 destinations.

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