All Eyes On... 2017

"All Eyes On..." is a series examining the award-winning and best-in-class executions from the 2016 Sunglasses Awards that continue to help elevate sunglasses standards in travel retail.

Select a retailer case-study:

All Eyes On... DFS


Sunglasses Retailer of the Year (above US$2bn) & Best Marketing Activity for the Sunglasses Category

DFS Group is at the forefront of creating luxurious shopping environments befitting the world’s premier brands. 2016 saw the world’s leading luxury travel retailer unveil several stunning new and refurbished stores, including T Fondaco dei Tedeschi by DFS in the heart of Venice; T Galleria by DFS, Angkor; and T Galleria by DFS Macau, City of Dreams. Each featured a sunglasses offer that was characterised by sleek, localised design and enhanced assortments, supported by strong customer engagement from its sales staff.

In 2016, DFS introduced 14 new sunglasses brands to its stores, including Saint Laurent Paris, Givenchy, Linda Farrow, Vedi Vero and Persol. In total, the retailer now carries 47 sunglasses brands across its estate, with differentiated ranges depending on shopper profiles.

The opening of T Fondaco dei Tedeschi by DFS was considered one of the retailer’s biggest milestones of 2016. It featured five presentations of the sunglasses category in an incredible historic setting revitalised by the interior design work of renowned architect Jamie Fobert.

At T Galleria Macau, City of Dreams, DFS unveiled a new and expanded retail concept, anchored by leading Italian luxury brands. The contemporary design in the sunglasses department reflects that of the wider store, with glass, marble and steel elements combined with warm wood accents.

“We are constantly working to improve the travel retail environment and deliver a world-class luxury shopping experience to global travellers and sunglasses – as the entry point to luxury – has an important role to play in achieving this aim. We recognise the category’s potential and will continue to invest in making it as seamless as possible to shop.”

Jason Blejwas, Global Director Of Merchandise, Sunglasses, Fashion Watches and Jewelry at DFS Group

New marketing platforms for the sunglasses category
In 2016, DFS also introduced new, bespoke 360º marketing campaigns for special sunglasses launches. Spanning online and offline platforms, as well as DFS’ social media pages, these campaigns aimed to drive pre-planned purchases and increase the visibility of the sunglasses category beyond the physical stores.

“DFS has demonstrated a clear commitment to the long-term growth of sunglasses, reinforced by new, bigger and improved spaces, spectacular design, strong brand partnerships, and dynamic marketing. They have certainly raised the bar for the category in 2016, and the result has been consistent and sustained sales growth.”

Giles Marks, Director Duty Free Sales, Maui Jim

“Promoting the sunglasses offer through digital channels is becoming a crucial part of travel retailers’ marketing strategies - especially when leveraging mobile devices and social media. The recent steps DFS has taken in this area provides us with a fantastic glimpse into the future, and they should be congratulated for pioneering this approach.”

Nina Pan, Worldwide Head of Duty Free & Travel Retail, Marcolin

“Over the years DFS has demonstrated a unique ability to develop and execute exceptional marketing campaigns thanks to their expertise in the sunglasses category and their strong brand partnerships. Their capacity to deliver such a strong communication platform with a comprehensive set of social media tools is just one example of how DFS delivers with first-class quality.”

Pietro Scognamiglio, Head of Global Travel Retail, Kering Eyewear

The store design of T Galleria by DFS, Angkor, reflects the rich artistic heritage of Siem Reap, with light woods and bright fixtures, to showcase around 30 brands.



Best Off-Airport Retailer of Sunglasses

As the leading retailer in South Korea – the world’s largest single travel retail market – Lotte Duty Free has an impressive track-record for showcasing brands and staying ahead of the trends in fashion and accessories. Before commencing its high-profile operations at Incheon Airport, Lotte Duty Free forged its reputation in downtown duty free, primarily through its flagship store in the Myeong-dong district of Seoul. It’s significant downtown presence has been bolstered by the opening of four further doors, most recently at Lotte World Tower and a refurbished Busan outlet.

Overall, Lotte Duty Free operates more than 400sqm of sunglasses retail space at the five downtown locations in Korea, plus further downtown duty free operations in Tokyo and Jakarta. A team of 400 dedicated sunglasses staff oversees a dynamic and vibrant offer, with around 80 brands represented.

Among Lotte Duty Free’s great successes has been in creating demand from native Koreans, and driving Chinese tourism, and tailoring its retail offer to these core nationalities. This is reflected in the fact that Korean and Chinese shoppers account for 97% of all Lotte Duty Free’s downtown sunglasses revenues, which reached almost US$72.5 million in 2015.

As well as fueling the ongoing success of established international eyewear brands, Lotte Duty Free has also played a pioneering role in launching and growing new and niche brands, contributing to sunglasses revenues growth of +8.7% in 2015 (vs 2014).

“Sunglasses is an extremely vibrant category, offering an accessible route into luxury and lifestyle brands for our key shopper nationalities. We have long seen its potential for the category and steadily increased our space and assortment in downtown locations for sunglasses, as sales and penetration for the category have increased.”

Mr Lim Daejun, Eyewear Buyer, Lotte Duty Free

“Lotte Duty Free has been a true innovator in the downtown duty free market, and evolved its focus on towards the sunglasses category. It’s presentation of the category and ability to identify and grow the latest, hottest brands is exceptional.”

Francesco Leccisi, Vice President, Asia Pacific & Oceania & Global Travel Retail at Essilor
All Eyes On... Kappé Schiphol


Best New Sunglasses Environment

Kappé is one of the most well-respected specialist travel retailers in Europe with a strong presence at Amsterdam Schiphol airport. Since 1950, Kappé has managed numerous stores at the hub, currently operating eleven stores spanning perfume and cosmetics shops, drugstores and sunglasses outlets.

In January 2016, Kappé Schiphol opened its new sunglasses concept in the revitalized See, Buy, Fly airside duty free area at Schiphol Airport Lounge 2. The lounge was officially opened in July 2016, with Schiphol Airport citing ambitious retail revenue growth targets of around 10-15%. Kappé sought to contribute to this upturn with a cutting-edge, best-in-class new sunglasses concept.

Kappé Schiphol’s new Sunglasses store is characterized by an elegant, minimalist and futuristic design concept, utilising the finest materials including LG Hi-macs, UV-edged glass and copper finishing. At 67sqm, the sizeable footprint allows for significant space to be dedicated to a wide range of brands, with over 1,000 SKUs on display in total.

The travelling consumer is at the heart of Kappé Schiphol’s sunglasses store with an ‘Open to Sell’ approach and real-time inventory management and monitoring to ensure the assortment is constantly on-trend and in-stock. Adding to the retail experience are several video walls while the store also features dedicated promotional areas.

In June 2017, the same store concept was applied to new shop in Lounge 1A Schengen at Amsterdam Schiphol, which is producing similarly strong results.

“Kappé has delivered a truly world-class sunglasses concept that takes the category to new levels in one of Europe’s major hub airports, Amsterdam Schiphol. It is a bright, attractive space that embodies many of the category management principles that are at the heart of Vision 2020, and conveys a premium feel befitting the best-selling sunglasses brands. Performance in its first year suggests that the offer is perfectly in-tune with what sunglasses shoppers’ needs and desires.”

Pietro Scognamiglio, Head of Global Travel Retail, Kering Eyewear

“Our goal when delivering our new Sunglasses store concept was to match the level of ambition demonstrated by Schiphol Airport in its vision for the revamped Lounge 2 area. The store looks fantastic, but there is science behind the beauty. The growth in sales that we have achieved is testament to our efforts and those of Amsterdam Schiphol airport and our Sunglasses supplier partners, as well as the huge potential of the sunglasses category.”

Jacque Parsons, Chairman, Kappé International
All Eyes On... London Supply


Sunglasses Retailer of the Year (under USD2bn)

London Supply is one of Latin America’s travel retail pioneers. Founded in 1942, the Argentinean duty free operator has presence in five locations in South America, including its flagship Duty Free Shop in the Puerto Iguazu duty-free zone in Argentina, which opened in 2002. This store underwent a revamp in 2014; upon its completion in 2016, the space more than doubled in size, from 4,000 sqm to 10,000 sqm.

The makeover saw the entire store, including the eyewear department, undergo an overhaul. Previously, eyewear was presented in a walkthrough format, with items kept under lock; customers could only try the products with store staff assistance. After the revamp, the eyewear section boasted its own standalone concept with an engaging store front; a larger-than-life sunglasses frame. In-store, shoppers are now able to try on the eyewear freely with open-shelf merchandising, segmented into lifestyle, fashion and luxury brands.

The permanent space is boosted by a special pop-up event area, featuring catwalk shows and dance performances, and outpost promotional sites for the category.

Before its revamp, its warehouse-to-store supply was not ideal, with a considerable distance from storeroom to shopfloor. With its redesigned restocking system, shops now receive direct and fast access to products, ensuring that its inventory is up-to-date and well-stocked.

All these investments by London Supply led to a 50% increase in sunglasses sales in 2016.

“It is truly impressive to see how far the Duty Free Shop in Puerto Iguazu has come since opening in 2002. London Supply not only doubled its space, but also made tremendous improvements in both shopper experience, instore environment and back-of-house processes. As a result of the investments by London Supply and their brand partners, the sales growth in 2016 was very impressive!”

Alessandra Piccin, Duty Free & Licensor Boutiques Sales Manager, De Rigo

“As Puerto Iguazu is a vacation destination, sunglasses are a popular tourist purchase, making it an important category in the Duty Free Shop. In order to stay relevant for our shoppers, we increased the visibility of the eyewear section and revamped it to improve their shopping experience. We are truly honoured to have achieved this award and remain highly motivated to continue to grow the category.”

Teddy Taratuty, President., London Supply
All Eyes On... Dufry


Best Dedicated Sunglasses Sales Team

Sales staff at the Sunglasses Boutique
Members of the Dufry team collecting the award from Marchon’s Erwan Le Guennec (second from right)

Dufry is the world’s leading travel retailer and currently employs more than 31,000 staff from over 70 nationalities. As with every retail business, people are its most valuable asset and play a major role in defining the proposition and performance of the travel retailer’s operations; this is no more so than in Dufry’s sunglasses category, which the retailer presents in its stores in a variety of different formats.

Dufry’s Sunglasses Boutique in London Heathrow Terminal 3 carries over 60 different brands and more than 1500 sunglasses. It is supported by a multi-lingual sales team with an innate passion for customer service, and a tangible sense of pride and achievement for their work

The staff are empowered with dedicated training from suppliers, including interactive E-learning systems and are aided by instore technologies such as face-mapping, which ensure they are able to provide the best fit and style of frames for customers. Dufry also employ an external agency to review service delivery processes and standards.

The Sunglasses Boutique’s ‘people-factor’ has contributed to some outstanding results, such as treble digit growth year-on-year in 2016, selling over 700 pairs per week on average. Sunglasses Boutique is also known internally within Dufry UK as the “multi-sales store”, as customers regularly purchase more than five sunglasses units in a single transaction.

“Dufry’s London Heathrow Terminal 3 Sunglasses Boutique is a fantastic example of how a dedicated sales team, well-trained and focus on customer service, can contribute to amazing results. Dufry’s commitment to high-quality specialist sunglasses staff is commendable, and will no doubt continue to bear fruit as they seek to grow their sunglasses business further.”

Erwan Le Guennec, International Travel Retail Director, Marchon

“The link between the effectiveness of the shop staff and sales is exemplified in the tremendous results at Dufry’s London Heathrow Terminal 3 Sunglasses Boutique. Customer service is fundamental to the success of a standalone sunglasses boutique as, in this format, customers expect the most specialist service underpinned by in-depth product knowledge and confident advice. Congratulations to the Dufry team and keep up the great work!”

Francis Gros, Head of Global Channels, Luxottica

“We are very proud to have the accomplishments of the sales team at our Sunglasses Boutique in London Heathrow Terminal 3 recognised on a global stage. Our team members are focused professionals with an outstanding commitment to first-class service, which is of utmost importance in the sunglasses category. Apart from requiring strong product knowledge, they also need to be able to confidently communicate to customers about their sunglasses needs and take a consultative approach!”

Silvia Morris, Global Category Manager - Sunglasses, Dufry