February 4 2019  |  Retailers

Exclusive interview: Mauritius Duty Free Paradise's newly appointed CEO aims to transform company

By Hibah Noor


Anoop Nilamber, the newly appointed CEO of Mauritius Duty Free Paradise (picture above), has set out his strategy in an exclusive interview with Gulf-Africa Duty Free magazine.

The former banker, who has worked in Paris at HSBC, was formerly an Economic advisor at the Ministry of Finance in Mauritius, before joining Mauritius Duty Free Paradise three months ago.

“It’s been very hectic [since I joined], as we are preparing our business transformation plan. Strategy is one thing but most important is execution. My aim is to transform the organization and to ensure we are well prepared to compete with regional and international competitors,” he said.

“My vision is to bring the organization to another level. Our staff will be at the heart of this transformation plan this is why our key agenda will be HR among others. Other investments are planned in new marketing tools such as digital tools.”

Mauritius Duty Free Paradise operates three airport stores in Mauritius and also trades on Rodrigues island, east of Mauritius. The business generated €60 million (US$68.8 million) in 2018.

As part of the strategic plan, the retailer’s first task will be to review the business processes in order to address efficiency in the execution of the activity.

“We need to be pro-active. We need the right tools which help us to take good and quick decisions,” he said.

Investing in digital

Technology is a key area for improvement. “We need to move into digital tools to sell – via social media, and design new ways to catch more customers. We will be investing heavily in digital.”

Mauritius Duty Free Paradise already has a loyalty program, which will be revamped. Because most of the operator’s customers use Air Mauritius, Nilamber is planning to strike a partnership with the carrier. “We need to capture their loyal clients,” he said.

Most of the passengers are tourists from Europe, and the main market is France. In the peak season there are around 50 flights arriving in Mauritius daily, with around the bulk of passengers from Europe.

The island is seeing more customers from Dubai and Saudi Arabia in the Middle East, and also from China, India, South Africa, and Australia.

New opportunities

Thanks to a planned increase in capacity at Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport over the next three years, the size of the company’s shops is also set to expand.

The medium to long-term plan is to enter the East African duty free market with potential partners. “Our objective is to become a regional player,” he said.

“We’re very close to Africa and we are part of the African continent. Given our proximity, we need to go outside of Mauritius to find new opportunities – in Kenya, Zambia, Rwanda, Madagascar – and we need to find partners there.

“In the next three years I expect we will be able to have at least a foot in one of those countries. We have the know-how, the experience and the right products.”

Brand News

February 15 2019

Rituals celebrates first store…

Rituals, the body and home cosmetics brand, has teamed up with its Americas distributor Essence Corp to open the brand’s…

By Hibah Noor

February 11 2019

La Prairie partners with Air France…

Swiss luxury skincare brand La Prairie has been selected as Air France’s exclusive partner in its wellness experience offer

By Jas Ryat

February 11 2019

Cigar aficionados gear up for Habanos…

Havana, which celebrates its 500th anniversary, is getting ready to host the XXI Habanos Festival for cigar lovers, which…

By Mary Jane Pittilla

February 11 2019

Moroccanoil jumps onboard Starboard…

Somar Distribution, the distributor of beauty and hair care products in the Caribbean, has partnered with Starboard Cruise…

By Hibah Noor

February 11 2019

Travel Blue has your luggage covered

Travel accessories specialist Travel Blue has introduced a range of luggage covers designed…

By Hibah Noor

February 11 2019

Heinemann hosts world-first Penfolds…

Treasury Wine Estates, in partnership with Heinemann Tax & Duty Free, has unveiled a global-first installation for Penfolds…

By Jas Ryat

February 11 2019

Denizen’s flying start in China…

American travel-inspired jewelry brand Denizen is kicking off 2019 in a festive way onboard three major Chinese carriers

By Jas Ryat

February 11 2019

Jean Paul Gaultier sets sail with…

Puig has extended the Jean Paul Gaultier Le Mâle fragrance range with a new limited-edition edt

By Mary Jane Pittilla

February 11 2019

Ray-Ban in pole position with first…

Luxottica Group is hailing the success of a series of airport activations promoting the exclusive Ray-Ban Scuderia Ferrari…

By Jas Ryat

Copyright 2019 DutyFree Magazine. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy Sitemap