Airport and Duty Free Review
DDF starts year on high note
The year began on a high note for Dubai Duty Free (DDF) with the announcement of a record annual turnover of Dh1.1 billion ($306 million), representing a 23 per cent increase over 2001.Year-end figures also revealed a new monthly sales record of Dh107.7 million ($30 million) which was achieved in December 2002 and surpasses the previous monthly record of Dh102.6 million ($28.5 million) which was set last October. Record-breaking sales have been a continual theme for Dubai Duty Free in the past twelve months, with the award-winning operation regularly announcing new retail benchmarks. Commenting on Dubai Duty Free's record year, HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of the Dubai Department of Civil Aviation and chairman of Emirates Group said, "2002 has been a tremendous year for the operation both in terms of turnover and industry recognition. The annual target of Dh1 billion sales ($280 million) was achieved several weeks ahead of schedule and the year-end figure firmly places Dubai Duty Free around fifth place in the world in terms of turnover." With buoyant sales figures continuing in the first few days of 2003, Dubai Duty Free is looking ahead to another strong year. "There is every indication that 2003 will be another great year," said Colm McLoughlin, managing director of Dubai Duty Free. "We have seen major growth in all categories including strong categories such as gold, which has increased by 18 per cent and electronics, which has increased by 24 per cent. Equally significant is the fact that spend per passenger increased to around $30. By the December 31 2002, shop-floor transactions at Dubai Duty Free reached 7.8 million, resulting in a new daily average of 21,000 transactions. From its bonded warehouse, the operation physically transports around 25 million products per year. Dubai Duty Free began operations in December 1983 and recorded a first full year turnover of Dh72 million ($20 million). The operation, which was named 'Company of the Year - Trade' in the Gold Category at the 2002 Dubai Quality Awards currently employs over 1000 staff.