Friday, 21 December 2007

Aer Rianta secures €1bn deal for Moscow airport

Irish Independent

By Jason Corcoran in Moscow

Firm beats off five rivals to develop duty-free services at new Russian terminal

Aer Rianta will operate 2,200sq m of retailing space in the duty-free area of Terminal 3 in Sheremetyevo where it has the rights to sell duty-free products across eight separate stores

Wednesday December 19 2007

The overseas arm of Aer Rianta has beaten off competition from five international rivals to secure a lucrative €1bn seven-year contract to develop duty-free services at Moscow's new Sheremetyevo Terminal 3.

Aer Rianta International, a subsidiary of the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA), will operate 2,200sq m of retailing space in the duty-free area of Terminal 3 where it has the rights to sell duty-free products across eight separate stores. The company has also signed a seven-year contract to operate two duty-free stores at the terminal's domestic gates.

The contract is expected to generate gross sales significantly in excess of €1bn over its seven-year term.

Eamon Foley, director general of Aer Rianta International, said the deal was a "must win" for the airport operator's position in Moscow.

He said: "It was a very competitive tender. This is a green-field site to build your own shops and to do something to show off to the world.

"It was a must-win contract for us if we were to remain the largest player in Moscow's airports. It confirms our reputation in Moscow and Russia."

Other tenders were submitted by Germany's Gebr Heinemann and Switzerland's Dufry and Nuance Group.

Foley said a new rail service connecting central Moscow to the airport in the New Year and the new terminal to house national carrier Aeroflot could revive Sheremetyevo, which has been losing business to other airports. "The new rail link will really help the airport to compete and over 12 million passengers will use Terminal 3 every year," he said.


Tatiana Zotova, marketing director of JSC Terminal, which is managing the new terminal, said: "Aer Rianta International has presented exclusive plans that will add significantly to the quality on offer in the new terminal while the company's unique experience of conducting business in Russia will ensure the highest operational standards are achieved."

Aer Rianta, a pioneer investor in the perestroika era of the 1980s, was the first duty-free operator in the country and celebrates its 20 years in Moscow in 2008. Under a joint venture with Russian airline Aeroflot and the airport, it runs duty-free shops at Sheremetyevo-2 international terminal, as well as the Irish bar and the AeroShop on-board stores.

Aer Rianta is currently negotiating with Sheremetyevo Airport over the sale of its 33pc stake in Terminal 2's duty-free business. Both the Irish company and the airline Aeroflot are interested in acquiring the stake for about $10-15m but could ultimately split it.

Aer Rianta runs duty-free concessions in Moscow's Vnukovo and Domodedovo airports, which have both been winning passengers and airlines at Sheremetyevo's expense in recent years.

- Jason Corcoran in Moscow

No comments: