Lotte Duty Free CEO Jang Sun-wook (third from right) looks around the new Lotte Duty Free store that opened on Wednesday at Da Nang International Airport, Vietnam.
South Korea’s leading travel retailer Lotte Duty Free opened its new store at Da Nang International Airport in Vietnam on Wednesday, a move that is expected to help the company tap deeper into the Southeast Asian market.
The new outlet commanding an area of 1,091 square meters hosts 115 brands of which 14 are Korean brands including Korea Ginseng Corp.’s red-ginseng products maker Cheongkwanjang and Naver’s character merchandising unit Line Friends, according to the company. Lotte plans to house more Korean brands at the new shop to capitalize on popularity of hallyu, or Korean cultural wave.
The Korean travel retail giant pins high hopes on its new store in Vietnam where the number of foreign visitors has been increasing at the fastest pace among other Southeast Asian countries, with a 30.6 percent on-year jump in the first quarter this year. The number of Chinese tourists to Vietnam also surged more than 60 percent over the same period.
Lotte Duty Free has aimed to open the new duty-free store ahead of the 25th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit to be held on November 10 at Da Nang, expecting the international event to help it promote its brand.
The company expects the new outlet would rake in more than 30 billion won ($26.8 million) in revenue a year. It also plans to open another store at downtown Da Nang to cash in on the growing Vietnamese market.
“As the rapidly growing Vietnamese market could serve as the gateway to Southeast Asia, we will consider opening additional stores at major cities of Vietnam including Hanoi, Nha Trang and Ho Chi Minh,” said Jang Sun-wook, chief executive of Lotte Duty Free.
Lotte Duty Free that opened its first overseas store in Indonesia in 2012 currently operates six outlets abroad including stores at Da Nang International Airport in Vietnam, Kansai International Airport and Ginza district in Japan, Guam International Airport in the U.S., Jakarta city in Indonesia and Bangkok city in Thailand.
By Sohn Il-seon and Choi Mira
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