LVMH’s travel retail activity “hampered” by a limited recovery

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Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH) saw revenue jump 56% year-on-year in the first half of 2021 as the recovery continued – but travel retail remains lagging behind.

The luxury house, which has both DFS and Starboard cruise services, announced a 5% increase in revenue from its selective distribution activity, which includes its travel retail activities. However, the 5.085 billion euros declared for the first half of 2021 are still 28% behind the figures recorded for the same period in 2019, before the pandemic.

The company highlighted some good news for DFS, including the unveiling of the first Hainan store in partnership with Shenzhen duty free and the opening of The Samaritan in Paris.

In a report published with the figures, LVMH declared: “In a business environment that is improving but remains disrupted by the stopping of international travel and a slow recovery in Europe, our Maisons have continued to take the necessary measures to adapt to the situation and have continued to enrich their digital content to drive online sales. and stay connected with customers.

As the recovery continues, DFS is now planning openings in Brisbane, Australia, and Queenstown, New Zealand for 2022, as the company expects these destinations to benefit from an influx of Chinese buyers once the borders reopen. Focusing on high-traffic destinations is at the heart of DFS ‘recovery plans, as the retailer considers opportunities to “grow” its operations in Macau and “pave the way for success” in Hainan and La Samaritaine.

DFS boosted by Macau performance

In the short term, the brand is deploying digital strategies to offset the slow recovery in passenger traffic.

T Galleria by DFS, Macau

The report continues: “During the half-year period, the [DFS] activity was driven by the gradual increase in air traffic, the excellent performance of its seven stores in Macau and its beginnings in Hainan.

“The acceleration of its digital strategy has also made it possible to boost sales thanks to a series of innovations: in Macao, the launch of a very powerful e-commerce platform and a mini-program on the WeChat the application provides customers with a unique shopping experience; new features allow partner brands to personalize their pages on DFS digital channels; and in North America, the launch of a digital solution for airports is helping to build customer loyalty and interest.

Starboard preparing for rebound

Starboard, meanwhile, is gearing up for the resumption of cruise operations as ports and countries ease restrictions.

“The House remains very cautious, but is preparing for a rebound in the activity of part of the fleet in the second half”, continues the report.

“The teams focused on exploiting opportunities in digital channels, optimizing the products and services offered according to each cruise line and implementing recovery plans. “

Reflecting on the results, Chairman and CEO of LVMH Bernard Arnault declared: “LVMH has had an excellent semester and is reaping the rewards of having continued to innovate and invest in its activities throughout the pandemic despite a global crisis.”

He concluded: “In the current context, as we emerge from the health crisis and witness a recovery in the global economy, I believe that LVMH is in an excellent position to continue its growth and further strengthen our lead in the global market. luxury in 2021. France being the main recruitment pool and the country of origin of many of our products, LVMH’s growth benefits the country today, and even more tomorrow, all our Houses being proud to bring their contribution.


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