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by Nicole Mezzasalma

LS Travel Retail has reported a sales increase of 8% in the first half of 2012 against the same period in 2011. According to the operator, despite the challenging environment its performance could be attributed to profitable growth through new concession gains, new business acquisitions across the continents where it operates (Asia/Pacific, Europe and North America) and on the improved performance of existing operations, including the implementation of new business initiatives and collaborations

In France, turnover generated on duty-free and luxury sales was up by 23% in the six months to June 30, owing to the acquisition of the fashion outlets at Paris Charles de Gaulle and Paris Orly airports, the modernisation of stores , commercial initiatives undertaken by airports such as Lyon St Exupéry, new openings on Réunion Island and good inflight performances. Six new airport outlets in Germany helped to boost the retailer’s business in the country by 10%, even with the postponement of the opening of Berlin Brandenburg airport from June to March 2013.

Business increased by 19% in Poland due to increased traffic and souvenir sales from the Euro 2012 football tournament and “a weakening in competition at Warsaw airport and the expansion of the network with the takeover of three sales outlets,” the company said. In the Czech Republic, a sales increase of 34% was attributed mostly to a 90% increase in duty-free and luxury sales following the purchase of 16 sales outlets from UG-AIR, where the like-for-like sales growth was 10%.

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