2015 Programme

09:00 - 11:00

Morning Plenary: Staying a step ahead

Cassia Conference Hall, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands 

The Asia Pacific region has consolidated its leadership status within the duty free & travel retail industry in recent years, thanks to economic growth in key markets, ambitious improvements to infrastructure and a continued appetite for travel among Asia’s citizens. Most forecasts suggest that further steady growth is likely.

However the retail environment in Asia Pacific is increasingly challenging, and competitive. Consumers have any number of opportunities to spend their dollars, and levels of penetration and conversion in duty free & travel retail leave considerable room for improvement. Sales in some markets, such as China, have slowed. If the industry in Asia Pacific is to remain the growth driver of the global business, it will need to adapt and to seize the opportunities that exist.      

The 2015 edition of the TFWA Asia Pacific Conference, themed Staying a step ahead, looked at how the regional industry can remain competitive and relevant to new generations of consumers. 

The morning plenary session set the duty free and travel retail sector within a broad context thanks to contributions from high-level speakers from within and beyond the industry, before a series of themed workshops explored key issues in depth.

The opening session also featured exclusive filmed interviews with travellers at Singapore Changi Airport, offering insights from the people that matter most. 

Erik Juul-Mortensen, President, TFWA
In his state of the industry address, TFWA President Erik Juul-Mortensen presented the latest data on travel retail performance in Asia Pacific, and looked at the role brands and brand-owners can play in helping the region fulfil its potential.
Download Erik Juul-Mortensen's presentation (pdf, 3,4 MB)

Jaya Singh, President, Asia Pacific Travel Retail Association
As APTRA continues to build its advocacy, research and training platform for the regional industry to develop, the association’s President Jaya Singh gave his perspective on the opportunities in the region – through the growth both in numbers and purchasing power of the Chinese consumer to the potential of online and multi-channel marketing. 
Download Jaya Singh's presentation (pdf, 6,9 MB)

Keynote addresses were provided by two of Asia Pacific’s most respected business leaders: Liew Mun Leong, founding President and CEO of CapitaLand Group, and Chairman of the Board of Directors at Changi Airport Group; and Andrew Wu, LVMH Group President, Greater China.

Liew Mun Leong has over 40 years of experience in construction and commercial real estate, and has been instrumental in the development of Changi Airport, widely recognized as one of the best airports in the world. He is well placed to discuss the rise of Asia, and the challenges facing the region as it strives to retain its growth momentum.

Andrew Wu, meanwhile, has wide experience in the luxury goods business in Asia. As Managing Director of Parfums Christian Dior in China, he oversaw the successful establishment of the brand’s network in the country in the 1990s. After several years with Sony Entertainment Group, Wu rejoined LVMH as its group head in China, responsible for its rapid growth in Asia’s biggest marketplace.    

The opening session will be moderated by John Rimmer, Conference, Research and Corporate Affairs Director, Tax Free World Association.

11:00 - 11:30

Business networking with coffee

11:30 - 13:00

Morning Workshops

Please note that workshops A & B run simultaneously

Workshop A: Enhancing the customer experience

Cassia Conference Hall, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands

Through filmed interviews shown during the opening plenary session of the TFWA Asia Pacific Conference, delegates heard direct from travellers about their perceptions of the current retail offer at airports. In this workshop, participants discussed how airports, retailers and brands can ensure those perceptions are positive.

Entitled Enhancing the customer experience, this session explored ways to create a real point of differentiation in duty free & travel retail; to use new communication tools to engage travellers more effectively; and to ensure in-store promotion and presentation matches the best of the High Street.

Confirmed speakers included Chief Executive Officer of Aer Rianta International Jack MacGowan, Changi Airport Group Assistant Vice President, Advertising & Promotions, Airside Concessions Nicole Foo and Nestlé International Travel Retail Global Head of Sales Alan Brennan

Workshop A was moderated by, John Sutcliffe.

Jack MacGowan's presentation (pdf, 4,9 MB)
Nicole Foo's presentation (pdf, 4,4 MB)
Alan Brennan's presentation (pdf, 4,5 MB)

Workshop B: Cruise control: exploring one of Asia’s fastest-growing travel retail sectors

Begonia Conference Hall, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands 

According to the recent State of the Cruise Industry report by the Cruise Lines International Association, cruiseline operators are to increase their Asian capacity by 20% in 2015. The industry is growing rapidly in this region, driven by increasing interest among Chinese tourists and by big investment in infrastructure by destinations such as Hong Kong and Singapore – which has stated its intention to become “the Caribbean of the East”. 

The Cruise control workshop looked in detail at this market, its current progress and potential, with insights on the opportunities for operators and brands both within the new generation of cruise terminals and onboard the vessels.

Confirmed speakers included the Managing Director of Kai Tak Cruise Plaza Trevor Moore and the Senior Vice President, Luxury Cruise Retail & Asia Office at Starboard Cruise Services David Goubert, and the Secretary General of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Asia David Goh

Workshop B was moderated by Dermot Davitt, Travel retail publisher, editor and commentator.

Trevor Moore's presentation (pdf, 1,7 MB)
David Goubert's presentation (pdf, 2,9 MB)
David Goh's presentation (pdf, 3,1 MB)

13:00 - 14:15

Business networking lunch

Heliconia Ballroom, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands

13:00 - 14:15

TFWA Industry association working lunch

Begonia Meeting Room, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands

This working lunch provided industry stakeholders with an opportunity to discuss regulatory and other issues facing the industry in Asia Pacific and beyond. Senior representatives from industry associations gave an update on progress and on the likely next steps regarding various challenges to the regional and global business.

By invitation only

Sarah Branquinho, President ETRC & Business Relations & External Affairs Director, World Duty Free Group

TFWA Industry association working lunch was moderated by Michael Barrett, Executive Officer, Asia Pacific Travel Retail Association.

14:15 - 15:45

Afternoon Workshops

Please note that workshops C & D run simultaneously.

Workshop C: Asia’s rising stars

Cassia Conference Hall, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands

This workshop focused on some of the markets that are generating most excitement in the Asia Pacific industry today. From Cambodia to New Zealand via Indonesia, retailers and brands are recognizing the potential that exists beyond the regional giants and making significant investments in stores both at the airport and downtown.

Underpinned by research currently being conducted by the Asia Pacific Travel Retail Association, the Asia’s rising stars session explored growth markets in the ASEAN region and in Australasia, and looked at how they are changing the travel retail landscape.

Confirmed speakers included the Vice President - Commercial of Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) Sang J. Ahn,  the Deputy General Manager of Haikou Meilan Airport Duty Free Shop Yong Sun, and the Founder and CEO of m1nd-set Global Marketing Intelligence & Solutions Peter Mohn.

Workshop C was moderated by the Editor of Duty-Free News International Kapila Gohel.

Sang J. Ahn's presentation (pdf, 7,8 MB)
Yong Sun's presentation (pdf, 4,2 MB)
Peter Mohn's presentation (pdf, 2,0 MB)

Workshop D: Competing in e-commerce

Begonia Conference Hall, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands

For many consumers in Asia Pacific, purchasing online is no longer the exception but the rule. And even “bricks-and-mortar” purchases – including at duty free & travel retail stores – are often researched thoroughly online. Competition from online retailers, many of whom can offer goods at prices below those available in travel retail, has been described as the most serious threat to our industry.  

The Competing in e-commerce workshop looked at how to turn that threat into an opportunity, exploring how the duty free & travel retail industry can harness e-commerce and digital marketing to compete more effectively with other retail channels. The session also offered an exclusive preview of a new study conducted by Counter Intelligence Retail entitled The Digital Age, offering insight into travelling shoppers’ experiences and engagement with digital media.

Confirmed speakers included General Manager of LS travel retail Pacific Ivo Favotto, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of AVA Online Group Oliver Segovia, and the Founder and Managing Director of Counter Intelligence Retail Garry Stasiulevicuis.

Workshop D was moderated by Charlotte Turner, Managing Editor, The Travel Retail Business.

Ivo Favotto's presentation (pdf, 1,0 MB)
Oliver Segovia's presentation (pdf, 2,2 MB)
Garry Stasiulevicuis' presentation (pdf, 1,5 MB)

15:45 - 16:15

Business networking with coffee

16:15 - 17:00

Closing plenary session: Competitiveness in a new world

Cassia Conference Hall, Level 3, Marina Bay Sands

The world economy is entering a new era of fragility, characterized by weaker growth, financial, monetary and price instability. Although still global, it is increasingly de-synchronized and fragmented. 

But volatility does not mean unpredictability. Some key issues will continue to shape competitiveness: new players and new brands from emerging economies, new markets such as Africa, new business segments, new conditions such as the cost of energy and labour, new rules in corporate governance and compliance, and new consumer attitudes. 

Our closing keynote speaker, Stéphane Garelli, explained how companies can win in this new world, and how they can implement business models which are more resilient, simpler and better adapted to local markets. 

Stéphane is a world authority on competitiveness, having pioneered this new field of economics. He is a professor at the International Institute for Management Development and at the University of Lausanne, and the founder of the World Competitiveness Center. Formerly a managing director of the World Economic Forum and of the Davos Annual Meetings, he publishes the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook – the most comprehensive and reputed study in the field of the competitiveness of nations.

Download Stéphane Garelli's presentation (pdf, 5,9 MB)


1/ Beware of fraudulent accommodation providers
It has come to our attention that unknown third parties are calling exhibitors and visitors, supposedly on behalf of TFWA, to enquire about hotel rates or to acquire information about hotel bookings.
Please be aware that TFWA is making no such approaches to exhibitors and visitors on this issue and we strongly recommend that you exercise extreme caution should you be contacted in this way.
Who are they?
Show participants have reported falling victim to fraudulent accommodation providers using names such as
Gold Exhibitions, EU Convention Bureau stareventz.net, Concierge Plus Group, Global Living Group, The Ultimate Living Group, Riviera Network, Business travel International, Expo Travel Group, Splendor Global, Universal Shows, Universal Events, Premier Destinations, Euro-Events, Biz Trade Shows, Go Fair Ltd, World Expo Plus, Euro Concierge Net or Euro Events Expo (this is not an exhaustive list).
How can you avoid these frauds?
Before making any commitment with an unknown accommodation provider, we recommend that you:
- Check thoroughly all documentation from the provider. In France, all property rental and travel agencies must be licensed and hold a bank guarantee and civil liability insurance. These details must appear on all company documentation including the website. 
- Be wary of our logos on accommodation providers’ websites. The TFWA name and event titles are sometimes used unlawfully.
- Book through our exclusive hotel booking platform where you can benefit from special hotel rates.
How do the frauds work?
- A fraudulent venture repeatedly emails our show participants with accommodation offers for the event.
- Their website and/or emails feature our show name and logos, creating an impression of authenticity.
- They promote attractive deals with local accommodation providers.
- Once payment has been received, the ‘company’ generally disappears and can no longer be contacted.
Please also note that bookings made through the official hotel reservation platform are absolutely secure.
2/ Beware of the fraudulent listing service "Expo guide"
We would also like to warn exhibitors that should they be contacted by a company named Expo Guide, that it is an online listing service and is in no way affiliated with TFWA or its official exhibition guide. The use of our association name and show name by this company has been made without our authorization. We therefore urge exhibitors to be cautious and encourage them to contact us when receiving these types of solicitations from unfamiliar sources.
TFWA Asia Pacific Conference & Exhibition in Review
Supported by Singapore Exhibition & Convention Bureau