As part of the DFNI Database & Insights 2022-23 publication, recently launched online, we undertook an extensive, in-depth supplier survey to canvass opinions from some of the biggest names across liquor, tobacco, confectionery, beauty and luxury products to hear their thoughts on the future of travel retail.
Suppliers to the global travel retail market discuss the factors having an impact on the road to recovery including rising cost of living, supply chain challenges and the Russia-Ukraine conflict alongside the positive developments in air travel. We continue the series with Molton Brown, Global Travel Retail Director, Sophie Sponagle.
The rising cost of living and the supply chain crisis is making it difficult for all stakeholders in the travel retail sector. What can suppliers, airports and travel retailers do together to ensure travel retail remains profitable for everyone?
Range and variety are central tenets of the travel retail offer and today they are more important than they have ever been before. Shoppers like to buy brands they trust, but this cannot come at the expense of creating a varied and exciting offer. This year we have been working with partners to bring new products and collections to the market, as well as highlighting popular icons and developing new opportunities to engage consumers before they arrive in-store.
Now that more travellers are flying again after the pandemic what changes have there been in purchasing behaviour? Are passengers spending more or is the cost-of-living crisis in many countries affecting spending patterns?
In the immediate aftermath of the pandemic we saw average transaction value increase, and this has been sustained during the year so far. This has been driven by the strength of leisure travel as shoppers continue to treat themselves, and we expect it to remain for the immediate future. We are also seeing the trend of Buy Less, Buy Better, in travel retail as shoppers seek out brands they trust; this is why we have continued our focus on our popular icons, to provide excitement and reassurance for customers in the market.
What are the latest trends in your product area that travel-retail buyers should be aware of?
Sustainability is a huge issue and topic in travel retail today. This reflects a wider trend in the beauty industry which is looking to overcome a long-standing problem with waste creation. For Molton Brown, sustainability and conscious care for the wider world have been a central part of our business since our foundation. There must be evidence of continued effort and improvement, that customers can see and experience. Therefore, this year we have released our Refill pouches in travel retail, to make our latest sustainability efforts available to shoppers worldwide. We continue to push the boundaries with a set of evolving sustainability commitments including being 100% vegetarian and cruelty-free and manufacturing all our collections in England. Our Botanical Hair Care Collection is 100% vegan; currently 97% of our collections are vegan and we aim to make that 100% by the end of year.