January 4 2019  |  Retailers

Dubai Duty Free annual sales exceed US$2 billion

By Hibah Noor

2018 provided Dubai Duty Free with major milestones, including the refurbishment of Concourse C

The New Year began on a high note for Dubai Duty Free as the operator announced annual sales for 2018 of US$2.015 billion, representing a 4.31% increase over the previous year.

In a remarkable year, the retailer crossed the US$2 billion milestone on December 29.

The operation’s 35th anniversary day on December 20, when customers were offered a 25% discount on a range of products, resulted in a huge surge with 103,626 transactions recorded on the day, amounting to sales of US$29.26 million in the 24-hour period.

Reflecting on another memorable year at Dubai Duty Free, Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO, said: “We are pleased to announce such a positive year in 2018, which marked our 35th anniversary and the crossing of the US$2 billion mark.

“The entire team at Dubai Duty Free has worked hard to provide passengers with a first-class shopping experience at both Dubai International and Al Maktoum International and I join our Chairman, H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, in thanking them for their efforts."

The five top-selling categories for the year included liquor, followed by perfumes, cigarettes, cosmetics and electronics. Perfume sales reached US$301.6 million and contributed 14.97% of total turnover.

Cosmetics recorded sales of US$208.88 million and electronics hit US$163.1 million, with these two categories showing an impressive increase of 21.77% and 8.82% year-on-year, respectively.

Sales of watches, which held sixth position, rose by 2.66% to US$145.63 million and accounted for 7.23% of annual sales. Gold followed with US$134.21 million, making up 6.66% of total sales, while confectionery generated US$ 130.37 million and made a 6.47% contribution.

Departures sales climbed by 6.12% to US$1.78 billion over the previous year and made up 88.35% of total turnover.

The operation recorded a total of 25,507,998 transactions for the year with 68,755,388 pieces of merchandise sold.

In addition, 2018 provided Dubai Duty Free with major milestones in terms of expansion, including the refurbishment of Concourse C, enhancements to the fashion offer in Concourse B and the opening of a shop in Queen Elizabeth 2, the first floating hotel, located in Port Rashid.

Looking ahead, Dubai Duty Free will continue to enhance its retail operation in 2019 while maintaining a busy events and promotional calendar, which includes the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, commencing on February 17 to March 2, 2019 at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium.

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