DFS Group starts winding down Changi Airport liquor business
DFS Group will close all of its stores at Changi Airport on June 8 as its 35-year tenure as wine and spirits concessionaire comes to an end.
With two of Changi Airport’s four terminals now mothballed in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis, and the number of travellers passing through the remaining ones at a record low, DFS Group has taken to selling more than 200 wines and spirits online at iShopChangiWines.com, offering discounts of up to 70 per cent off regular price. The company says it will absorb taxes and duties for customers, who do not have to travel to receive the discount.
From now until May 22, daily flash deals will run on the site as well.
“As one of DFS’ most esteemed allies for the last 35 years, we thank Changi Airport Group for their ongoing support and partnership,” said Aymeric Lacroix, DFS Group MD Asia South.
“We will continue to serve our customers with the same passion for excellence that has distinguished us at Changi Airport until our official exit in June.”
DFS Group opted not to bid to renew its concession at Changi Airport because it did not believe it could continue to trade there viably.
“Our decision not to bid was based on our unique understanding of the business environment as the current operator of this concession at Changi,” chairman and CEO Ed Brennan said in a statement last August.
The LVMH-owned group withdrew from Hong Kong International Airport as well, several years ago. At Changi DFS Group will be replaced by South Korea’s Lotte Duty Free.
DFS Group’s Changi exit applies only to its high-profile liquor concession. The company will continue to operate its multi-label “Fashion Avenue” at Terminal 3 and various brand boutiques across all operating terminals.
Since winning the Liquor and Tobacco concession in 1985, DFS Wines and Spirits opened numerous stores across Singapore Changi Airport, including in Terminal 2 (1990), the first of its kind Duplex store at Terminal 3 including the Raffles Long Bar (2015), the second Wines & Spirits Duplex store at Terminal 2 (2016) and the first ‘walkthrough’ retail concept store at Terminal 4 (2017).
“For 35 years and over 300 thousand hours, DFS has been in operation at Changi Airport. Over three wonderful decades of memories and friendships later, it has become an iconic go-to stop for passengers leaving and arriving in Singapore, carrying more than 700 different wines and spirits brands, and selling more than 200 million bottles,” said Lacroix.