February 6 2019  |  Retailers

Syrian national scoops $1m in Dubai Duty Free promotion

By Mary Jane Pittilla


Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman & CEO of Dubai Duty Free, together with Ramesh Cidambi, Chief Operating Officer, and Sinead El Sibai, Senior Vice President – Marketing, pictured with Abhishek Kathel receiving his US$1 million prize from the previous series

A Dubai-based Syrian national has won US$1 million in Dubai Duty Free’s Millennium Millionaire promotion.

The draw took place on February 5 in Terminal 3 at Dubai International Airport.

Businessman Riad Anka Esmail purchased his winning ticket on January 7 while traveling to Syria for a holiday.

He said: “It was my sixth ticket in the million-dollar promotion and I can’t believe that I have actually won. This is a great surprise – thank you so much, Dubai Duty Free.”

Esmail is the seventh Syrian national to have won US$1 million since the promotion was launched in 1999.

After the Millennium Millionaire draw, a presentation to a previous winner, Abhishek Kathel, took place.

Kathel, an Indian national based in Sharjah and working as cabin crew for Air Arabia, bought his first ticket from The Craft Shop at The Irish Village.

During the presentation, he said: “This win has given me the chance to pursue everything I have ever dreamt of. I am so thankful to Dubai Duty Free.”

The draw and the presentation were conducted by Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman & CEO of Dubai Duty Free, Ramesh Cidambi, Chief Operating Officer, and Sinead El Sibai, Senior Vice President – Marketing.

Following the Millennium Millionaire, Dubai Duty Free also conducted the Finest Surprise draw, announcing two winners of luxury vehicles.

Ramesh Chandra, a Dubai-based Indian national, won a BMW S 1000 R motorbike, while Mr Ammar, a Saudi national, won the top-of-the-range Bentley Bentayga V8.

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