Dubai Shopping Festival Helps Dubai Duty Free Turn Flyers Into Buyers #Dubai - Dubai City Guide
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Dubai Shopping Festival Helps Dubai Duty Free Turn Flyers Into Buyers
(18 January 2015)


Dubai Duty Free continues to play a pivotal role in offering visitors from around the world a fantastic glimpse of Dubai Shopping Festival’s offerings even before they step outside of the airport.

As one of the Strategic Partners of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), an agency of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), and the organisers of DSF, Dubai Duty Free’s continuous support in promoting the festival through amazing retail offers and exciting promotions bears testimony to the success of this long-standing partnership over the last many years. Such long-term collaboration has given Dubai’s retail sector a strong boost, as tourists of diverse nationalities make the most of the amazing shopping experiences that Dubai has to offer during this shopping extravaganza.

Speaking to DFRE’s Media Centre, Mr. Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman, Dubai Duty Free, highlighted the changes and the impact DSF has had on Dubai Duty Free over the last two decades.

“From the inception of Dubai Duty Free in 1983, one of our key objectives has been to promote Dubai on a regional and global stage and to help establish the emirate as a leading business, leisure, shopping and sporting destination. The influx of tourists during the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) has played an important role in turning “flyers into buyers” in the emirate. Growing from a sales turnover of US$20 million in 1983 to US$1.917 billion in 2014, Dubai Duty Free is very much part of the fabric of Dubai’s growth as a world-class destination.”

On the importance of the DSF period in terms of Dubai Duty Free’s success, Mr. McLoughlin said: “DSF, which attracts so many visitors to Dubai during the beginning of the year, plays an important role in driving the retail sector across the board. For Dubai Duty Free, the additional visitors mean that we have an opportunity to increase the spend per head of those travellers and to convert flyers into buyers. Our job is to ensure that we sell to around 50 per cent of all travellers, so with the increase in passengers, our sales should increase and this is the case.”

In terms of the special initiatives, promotions and customer engagement strategies that Dubai Duty Free has implemented for the 20th edition of DSF, Mr. McLoughlin, said: “Dubai Duty Free has a number of initiatives in place to maximize the potentials and opportunities brought about by the impact of the consumers during this annual shopping festival.”

Commenting on the role of DSF in contributing to the overall economic development of Dubai and promoting the emirate around the world in the last 20 years, Mr. McLoughlin, said:, “There is no doubt that tourism is driven a great deal by the retail offers in Dubai, in addition to the fantastic hospitality, leisure and cultural events that go hand in hand with the shopping experience. The fact that there is such a comprehensive calendar of events for visitors during DSF makes the festival a key attraction for families in particular, which is an important target audience for Dubai.

Asked to summarise in one phrase what DSF meant to him, he said it was “the world’s most loved shopping and entertainment bonanza!”

In terms of the popular products or items that people are purchasing during DSF, Mr. McLoughlin, said that the categories of products do not alter dramatically during DSF. The main products sold include perfumes and cosmetics, gold, confectionery, fashion items and electronics.

Speaking about Dubai Duty Free’s future plans, he said, “Our plans obviously go hand in hand with the development at Dubai International Airport and Al Maktoum International – Dubai World Central. The opening of Concourse D at Dubai International this year will add a new dimension to our retail offer of 26,000 square metres. With Concourse D, we will add a further 7,000 square metres of retail space there with a different layout and some new brands.”

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