DENMARK. Leading travel retailer Gebr. Heinemann and influential media company Highsnobiety have struck a long-term partnership to develop the GATEZERO brand in the travel retail market. The first store under their deal will open on 13 May at Copenhagen Airport.
As reported, the first GATEZERO pop-up concept store opened at Zürich Airport last year. Gebr. Heinemann said it began cooperating with Highsnobiety 18 months ago, with a partnership contract concluded in 2021.
GATEZERO will open its first permanent shop at Copenhagen Airport, under a five-year contract. The 32sq m shop offers a mix of global and local fashion brands. The focus is on private label collaborations, accessories and limited footwear.
In addition, GATEZERO will introduce brands that are new to travel retail such as Comme Des Garçons and Acne Studios. As in Zürich, GATEZERO worked together with well-known architectural firm Brinkworth to develop the store.
“GATEZERO is a place where creative and cultural pioneers can intersect on their journeys. As a constantly changing and ever adapting hub for brands, product, and storytelling, GATEZERO stores are, on their own, a travel destination,” said Victor Chan, Co-Managing Director of GATEZERO, who moved to Berlin for the joint venture from Hong Kong, where he had been General Manager for Gebr. Heinemann since 2018.
The idea of a long-term cooperation between Highsnobiety and Gebr. Heinemann was developed by the retailer’s Vision Hub. Lennard Niemann, Managing Director of innovation lab GHARAGE said: “New target groups are constantly evolving at airports, which are very interesting for us. In particular, the new luxury consumer, on whom Highsnobiety focuses, is gaining importance in many markets. To reach these target groups we needed more than one retail concept and we also have to find new ways to address the travellers and to communicate with the shoppers. This is why GHARAGE, together with Highsnobiety co-created the concept of a permanent new luxury destination at airports.”
Gebr. Heinemann is responsible for operational excellence and retail innovations, while Highsnobiety is primarily responsible for the creative and brand input. The partners said that “a comprehensive retail concept was developed that uses Highsnobiety’s reach to credibly address the new luxury consumer”.
Highsnobiety CCO Max Berger said: “When we started working with Gebr. Heinemann, we were already talking to Zürich Airport about possible marketing activities. During the design process of GATEZERO, the pop-up store in Zürich became a first version of what will follow in our partnership. We are happy that we can draw many lessons for the further development of GATEZERO from this temporary shop.”
GATEZERO is currently working on the presentation of the concept at other airports. From Autumn 2022, the GATEZERO concept will be rolled out at “select premium airports worldwide” said the partners. GATEZERO said it would benefit in particular from Gebr. Heinemann’s partnerships with numerous airports around the globe.
“The pop-up in Zürich already shows that this concept works, and it even attracts a bigger target group than we thought,” said Simon Weisskopf, Co-Managing Director of GATEZERO.
“With our new offer, we will address the traveller throughout his entire journey – and part of this journey are also the social media channels, where our target group finds inspiration and exchange takes place.”