The Trinity Forum 2018: Day Two

Thanks partly to its new format (a half day followed by a full day culiminating in the Gala Dinner) and the sheer quality of the speaking line-up, The Trinity Forum 2018 certainly didn't suffer from the dreaded 'day two syndrome' of many industry conferences.

On day two, the audience returned in encouraging numbers to listen attentively to another roster of charismatic speakers from all areas of the industry, plus outside voices

From the possibilities offered by experiential retail to the challenges of tearing travellers away from their beloved mobile devices, one crucial theme emerged: the importance of the customer, of understanding them better and offering the best experience possible, both in-store and virtually.

Martin Moodie welcomed a packed room of delegates to the second and final day of a deeply thought-provoking Trinity Forum.

AirAsia Deputy Group CEO (Digital, Transformation and Corporate Services) Aireen Omar argued the case for airlines being an integral part of the Trinity conversation. Earlier this year AirAsia launched Ourshop, a hugely ambitious air-to-ground inflight marketplace.

Introduced as "travel retail's digital transformation man", AOE Chief Executive Officer Kian Gould lived up to his billing with a compelling address. “Digital won’t replace the physical," he said. "But it is where the future lies.”

The billion dollar opportunity: Budapest Airport Head of Retail and Advertising Patrick Bohl said that a +5% uplift in sales would deliver an extra billion dollars to European travel retail. All-embracing partnerships such as Budapest's BARTA (Brand, Airline, Retailer, Technology, Airport) trial incentivise (and deliver) greater conversion for both airport and airline, he noted.

Auckland Airport in New Zealand has been one of the earliest adopters of an omni-channel strategy. Its digital play The Mall, launched earlier this year, is delivering strong results, according to Omnichannel Manager Jayne Wear, who spoke of the need to offer the travelling consumer a seamless physical-to-digital experience.

Moodie Insights General Manager Craig Mackie delivered a challenging address, centered on the need to interpret and use data findings in a dynamic and agile manner.

m1nd-set CEO & Owner Peter Mohn introduced The Data Circle, a new partnership between his company, Generation Research and The Moodie Davitt Report. It will deliver a twice-yearly ‘state of the industry’ report, including traffic and sales performance and analysis of key market indicators.

Lagardère Travel Retail Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Dag Rasmussen explained some of the ways in which his company is dealing with the changing airport and travel retail commercial ecosystem. These include a reassessment of customer profiles, a change in retail offer, and also a new approach to digital: using technology to communicate with customers in novel and creative ways.

Dag Rasmussen: “We believe the Chinese population is the driving force of travel retail.”

Leonidas provided some delectable treats during the morning coffee break.

Airport Council International (ACI) ASQ Associate Director Dimitri Coll introduced the association's new ASQ (Airport Service Quality) Commercial survey, which provides insights into commercial performance and how airports can optimise non-aeronautical revenues.

(Above and below) Mars International Travel Retail General Manager Gary Clarke delivered a deeply thoughtful, often personal, address that embraced big-picture questions of social and environmental responsibility.

What is the future of tobacco in travel retail? Altria International General Manager Michael Simon (above and below) made a compelling case for the category, and underlined its importance not just as a sales driver in its own right but also as a footfall driver for other product sectors. Experiential retail is critical to the future of the category and the channel, he argued.

An outstanding panel brought together (from left) moderator Dermot Davitt; Shanghai Airport Authority Vice President Ruijun Jia; Furla Global Travel Retail Director Gerry Munday; and Japan Airport Terminal Company Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Director Hiroshi Onishi.

Innovative branding from lunch-time sponsor Perricone MD.

Ruijun Jia, Vice President of the Trinity Forum’s host Shanghai Airport Authority, expressed a desire to work together to create a “win-win future” for all industry players. 

“The world is certainly going to be a very different place in 2030,” said Furla Global Travel Retail Director Gerry Munday, gazing into her crystal ball. Will global travel retail still be a showcase for brands? By 2030, we can expect 8.2 billion passengers annually (according to IATA). Every one of them, said Munday, is a potential shopper. But every one of them will have to be converted first from passenger to shopper.

To maximise the opportunities for non-aeronautical revenue at airports, said Japan Airport Terminal Company Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Director Hiroshi Onishi, we must understand the customer much better and give them exactly what they want.

"Reimagining the airport commercial offer." A blockbuster panel featured (from left to right) The Moodie Davitt Report President Dermot Davitt; Manchester Airports Group (MAG) Executive Vice President Business Development & Lounges Beth Brewster; Greater Toronto Airports Authority Vice President Customer & Terminal Services Scott Collier; Central Japan International Airport Co President & CEO Masanao Tomozoe; Shiseido Travel Retail Asia Pacific General Manager Kenji Calméjane; and VGI Global Media Airports Chief Operating Officer Jonathan Goldsmid.

Manchester Airports Group (MAG) Executive Vice President Business Development & Lounges Beth Brewster Lounges, said that passenger lounges offer an ideal opportunity to communicate with travellers about airport services before arrival. “This is an incremental industry,” she said, citing MAG findings that lounges do not cannibalise profits from F&B outlets.

Greater Toronto Airports Authority Vice President Customer & Terminal Services Scott Collier was in typically ebullient form “Passengers are our passion.” Trinity, and the spirit of Trinity, he said, has taught his company much, and the spirit of collaboration continues to inspire. "We're open for business and we want to do it differently," he said.

Central Japan International Airport Co President & CEO Masanao Tomozoe shared his company’s vision of the future. Championing excellent customer service and a people first approach, the airport’s focus will be on engaging experiences – in retail and beyond – and creating a Sense of Place. He proceeded to show some superb examples, including activations featuring characters such as Pikachu and Hello Kitty.

Shiseido Travel Retail General Manager (Asia Pacific) Kenji Calméjane delivered a superb (and superbly illustrated) address that urged greater interaction with customers via enhanced storytelling.

Jonathan Goldsmid of Thai media owner and airport advertising specialist VGI highlighted some of the best OOH advertising campaigns of recent years, both in airports and elsewhere. He urged delegates to work together in order to truly harness the opportunities these can offer. “We have to explore new ways to partner,” he said. “We need to be prepared to fail in the pursuit of growth.”

Belgian chocolate house Godiva has been a stalwart supporter of industry collaboration for years, once again underpinning that commitment with sponsorship of The Trinity Forum.

A powerful panel discussion focused on the all-important Chinese luxury and travel shopping market brought The Trinity Forum 2018 to an illuminating close. It featured (left to right with moderator Martin Moodie) star turns from Angela Wang, Partner and Managing Director at Boston Consulting Group China; Yan Lee, Chief Product Officer at iClick Interactive; Mirko Wang, Founder, Chairman and CEO at Jessica’s Secret; Yiling Pan, Associate Editor at Jing Daily and Jing Travel and Yan Lee, Chief Product Officer at iClick Interactive (Asia) Limited.

The Boston Consulting Group China Partner and Managing Director Angela Wang said that while modern Chinese consumer may be glued to their mobile phones most of the time, they still like to shop in person. ROPO (research online, purchase offline) is a serious phenomenon among this demographic.

Yan Lee of digital technology powerhouse iClick spoke about the company’s extraordinary data capabilities, which enable it to track and profile 750+ million Chinese ‘netizens’ each month. Last month Digital iClick unveiled the Chinese Outbound Travel Shopper White Paper, in association with The Moodie Davitt Report (which you can find on our website).

Jessica’s Secret founder, Chairman & CEO Mirko Wang: “China changes every day. Even the Chinese cannot keep the pace.” This was a fascinating presentation on the Chinese travel retail consumer. Common mistakes from brands include lack of basic information to the consumer, marketing that is wrongly targeted or not coherently planned across platforms, and a focus on content over communications.

Yiling Pan is Associate Editor for Jing Daily and Jing Travel, the outstanding and hugely insightful B2B titles with whom The Moodie Davitt Report enjoys a burgeoning information-sharing relationship. She delivered an excellent address on trends among Chinese consumers and ways to better engage them.

The Moodie Davitt e-Zine | Issue 251 | 12 November 2018