January 11 2021  |  Retailers

Schäfer Travel Retail looks to expand its global store footprint

By Laura Shirk

Described as a long-term strategic move, with a new 8,000-sqm distribution center in Germany, Schäfer TR plans to achieve a more efficient distritubtion operation and continue its growth of airport retail in other European countries

After buying land and securing planning permission, Schäfer Travel Retail intends to build a new 8,000-sqm distribution in Germany to expand its store footprint. Operating consumer electronic stores under the brand Move at a number of key airports, Schäfer TR explains that the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2022.

The property will be sited at Willroth Business Park, neighboring a major Haribo warehouse, adjacent to the A3, one of Germany’s main arterial roads. The location, which will also include offices to headquarter the Schäfer business, lies about an hour from Frankfurt Airport and just 30 minutes from Cologne and Bonn airports.

The planned specification for the building will ensure strong green credentials with provision for the use of renewable energy. When appropriate, Schäfer says that it will apply for German sustainable building certification, which places equal emphasis on the environment, people and commercial viability. Furthermore, the distribution center will be constructed on a brownfield site, which was a former slate mine.

Neighboring a major Haribo warehouse, the property will be sited at Willroth Business Park and include offices to headquarter the business

“Some people might say that this is not the right time to make such a bold move to build an ambitious distribution center, but we believe the opposite. We firmly believe in a strong future for travel retail, despite the painful current difficulties for the channel brought on by COVID-19.

The timing for the completion of our project should mirror the start of meaningful recovery and give us a strong platform from which to achieve our ambitions for scaling the business and making acquisitions to support expansion.

The new building is an important long-term strategic move for us toward achieving a more efficient distribution operation, which we will need to continue the growth of the business. Our ambitions stretch way beyond the German market and we believe that this project will lay the foundation for us to move into multiple overseas markets, as well as into airport retail in other European countries,” shares John Woodhouse, Managing Partner, Schäfer Airport Retail.

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