Profiling the world’s top travel retailers

Lagardère Travel Retail


2019 turnover

€4,500 million

2018 rank




Duty free and luxury was worth €2.3 billion in sales to Lagardère Travel Retail last year (The Fashion Gallery at Singpaore Changi pictured)

Lagardère Travel Retail retains fifth place in our rankings after posting €4.5 billion in managed retail sales. That’s a healthy €300 million rise on the 2018 figure and includes a contribution of €2.3 billion from duty free & luxury and €2.2 billion from travel essentials. It excludes the fast-growing food service division which hit €1 billion in sales for the first time in 2019 (doubling in three years), with these rankings confined to retail sales only.

Amid the COVID-19 crisis, Lagardère Travel Retail’s position as a core strategic business within Lagardère Group, along with Lagardère Publishing, has been reinforced.

Multi-territory approach: Aelia Duty Free at Libreville Airport

Lagardère SCA General and Managing Partner Arnaud Lagardère said in March that “our strategy is now concentrated on two priority areas: Lagardère Publishing, our power engine, and Lagardère Travel Retail, our growth engine”. That focus was underlined with the decision to divest another division, Lagardère Studios, in June.

The company has been working to reopen its operations steadily and where it makes most profitable sense, while negotiating reduced percentage rents with airports for the return phase (and into next year where possible).

Speaking after the company revealed Q1 results in late April, Lagardère Travel Retail Chairman & CEO Dag Rasmussen said it was unclear when business might return to ‘normal’ levels, a view that holds true over two months on.

“We have no visibility on the future but I would not imagine that 2021 will be a normal year; that would be over-optimistic,” he noted candidly. There were also too many “unknowns” to establish clarity about the recovery, he added.

Groupe ADP, Lagardère Travel Retail’s key airport partner in its home market, said this month that it will take at least three years to return to profitable growth at the two major Paris airports. With regional markets likely to accelerate at different speeds, it makes the retailer’s diversification strategy – across multiple geographies and its three business lines – more important than ever.

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The Moodie Davitt eZine

Issue 281 | 16 July 2020

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