September 9 2019  |  Retailers

Gebr Heinemann and Cologne Bonn Airport celebrate 50 years of duty free

By Jas Ryat


A special partnership: Gebr Heinemann and Cologne Bonn Airport celebrate half a century of cooperation. From left: Torsten Schrank (CFO Cologne Bonn Airport), Gunnar Heinemann (Co-owner Gebr Heinemann) and Johan Vanneste (CEO Cologne Bonn Airport)

Fifty years ago, Gebr Heinemann opened its first duty free shops worldwide at Cologne Bonn Airport.

Five decades later, the Hamburg family business is still the retail concessionaire at Cologne Bonn Airport, now with five shops, over 100 employees and a total sales area of around 1,800 square meters.

Claus Heinemann, co- owner of Gebr Heinemann, said: “We are very proud of our longstanding and successful partnership with Cologne Bonn Airport. The airport is the cradle of our business in the airport retail sector, because it was here that we dared to make the leap from being a pure wholesaler to operating shops ourselves, which was a new level of trade for us back in 1969.”

His cousin and co-owner Gunnar Heinemann added: “It’s really wonderful to see how business here in Cologne has developed over the last five decades. All the innovations our company has realized in recent years have been successfully implemented here, whether in transitioning from the service counter to the walk-through self-service shop, or from the simple Duty Free logo to our own Heinemann retail brand – both the airport and our employees here on site have offered us outstanding support along the way.”

Johan Vanneste, CEO of Flughafen Köln/Bonn GmbH, also offered his congratulations on the anniversary: “Heinemann is an integral part of our airport family. We share a very long and successful history. There have been shops here at Cologne Bonn Airport ever since Terminal 1 was built. Together we have succeeded in building up a trusting partnership over 50 years, one that provides the basis of our joint success.”

Anniversary gifts for customers

Under the motto “As attractive as on the first day”, Heinemann aims to surprise its customers throughout September and October with numerous anniversary campaigns and special offers, including traditional brands such as Toffifee, Gaffel Kölsch and the classic fragrance 4711 Echt Kölnisch Wasser.

Heinemann customers can also look forward to gifts including a limited-edition Ritter Sport and a trendy LOQI bag when making purchases of €50 (US$55) or more. Travelers participating in the Heinemann & Me loyalty program can celebrate the anniversary with a free Schlumberger piccolo.

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