CHINA. LS travel retail Asia Pacific (ASPAC) has scored an important contract success in China, after being awarded a 1,700sq m luxury and fashion contract at Shenzhen Airport’s new domestic Terminal 3.

The state-of-the-art new terminal is expected to open in late 2013.

LS travel retail ASPAC Chief Operating Officer Emmanuel de Place announced the award at the end of the first day of the “˜China’s Century’ travel retail conference in Beijing, organised by TFWA and APTRA.

Speaking to The Moodie Report immediately afterwards, De Place and LS travel retail China General Manager Eudes Fabre described the award, which followed a competitive negotiation process, as a major boost for the French travel retailer’s Asian and Chinese growth strategy.

Fabre described the concession as long-term, and said it would feature 13 mono-brand areas, of varying size from Hugo Boss, Ferragamo, Emporio Armani, Coach, Dunhill, Tommy Hilfiger, Shanghai Tang, Bally, Versace, Mont Blanc, Cerrutti 1881, Zegna and Furla.

Eudes Fabre (left) and Emmanuel de Place pictured in Beijing today after the announcement of the LS travel retail Asia Pacific contract award in Shenzhen

T3 represents a massive investment by the airport operator, Fabre said. “It has over 450,000sq m of airport space, with over US$1 billion spent on it. The terminal itself is truly a masterpiece. When it opens, it will be one of the best-looking terminals in China and arguably the most functional. This terminal really is a game changer and is one of the reasons we are so confident about our prospects in Shenzhen.

“The passenger concentration [in terms of flow] is also exceptional compared to most Chinese airports,” he added. “There’s a funnel effect so that virtually all passengers go through this gorge that’s only 10 metres wide so you really get a concentration of the passenger traffic, which will result in really good exposure for the brands.”

“The airport understands the investment required by us and to their credit they have also invested money in the fit-out.”

De Place said: “The real challenge was to get these 13 international luxury brands together. It’s been a real Trinity project because we had a true partnership with the airport and we also had to work very closely with the brands to ensure we could deliver what we promised.

“Fortunately we can say we are a leading luxury fashion airport operator in Asia, mainly thanks to our business at Singapore Changi Airport, so the brands trust us and know we won’t disappoint them. So it was a challenge but the Trinity really worked this time.

“It’s a big step for us and perfectly in line with our Asian strategy that we announced over two years ago. We want to expand in Asia and specifically in China, of course. We have been in China for a decade now, where we started with different speciality businesses, including Relay and Discover. Next was duty paid luxury fashion, which we hope will lead to further developments, both in duty paid and eventually duty free.

“The next step will be the third element of LS travel retail, which is food & beverage, where we will make a move sooner or later in China as well. But our real focus for late 2013 and 2014 will be to deliver what we promised in terms of excellence both to Shenzhen Airport and to the brands.”

Shenzhen Airport handles around 30 million passengers, the vast majority being domestic.

NOTE: All the key stories on China’s travel retail industry – and on international travel retailers selling to Chinese travellers – are covered in The Moodie Report China, published in bi-lingual, e-Zine format every two months. To receive your free first-year subscription, please e-mail