Sales transactions at Dubai Duty Free reached Dh26.99 million last year, both at Dubai’s main airport and Al Maktoum International Airport — which means there were around 73,960 sales transactions per day. Image Credit: DDF

Dubai: Dubai Duty Free (DDF) achieved a 7.4 per cent increase in sales to reach Dh6.99 billion in 2014 — a record for the airport retailer — driven by the renovation of Terminal 2 and the opening of new stores.

“The sales for 2014 are due to a mixture of things. We have finalised the upgrade/expansion of the Terminal 2 retail area and that is doing very well as Flydubai continues to expand. In addition, the fashion offer in Concourse A is now complete with the opening in recent months of the Chanel shop at DDF, along with Hermes [and] Gucci, which join the Ferregamo shop.” said Colm McLoughlin, executive vice-chairman of DDF, in an emailed statement.

The sales growth was achieved despite 80-day runway repair work at Dubai International Airport last year that had cut capacity by 26 per cent.

The airport retailer said on Sunday in a statement that sales grew by 7 per cent year-on-year in December to Dh749.13 million, driven by a 25 per cent discount on an array of merchandise from December 18 to 20 to celebrate DDF’s 31st anniversary. The three-day period brought in Dh188.86 million in sales.

Sales transactions at DDF reached Dh26.99 million last year, both at Dubai’s main airport and Al Maktoum International Airport — which means there were around 73,960 sales transactions per day.

Bestselling categories

The bestselling product categories last year were perfume, accounting for Dh1.147 billion in sales and contributing 17 per cent of DDF’s total sales, followed by beverages and gold, cigarettes and tobacco, and confectionary. Sales of cosmetics and watches grew too, rising by 19 per cent to Dh531 million and by 9 per cent to Dh499 million respectively.

The retailer expects to record Dh7.7 billion in sales in 2016 and Dh10 billion in 2018.

Sales at DDF departures, which accounts for 88 per cent of the total, rose 6 per cent in 2014, while Arrivals’ sales grew by 9 per cent over the previous year.

Terminal 2 and Terminal 3 sales grew by 10 per cent and 7 per cent year-on-year respectively.

The retailer said in the statement that it will continue to enhance its retail operation with the ongoing refurbishment of Concourse C and the opening of a 7,000 square metre retail space in Concourse D.

Dubai International has recorded a steady increase in passenger traffic in recent months. It expects to attract more than 71 million passengers in 2014.