TFWA World Exhibition and Conference 2014, Cannes

TFWA-3This Year we attended the 30th Duty Free and Travel Retail Global Summit in its regular spectacular setting of Cannes. It’s a great event where key players in the travel retail arena get together for “five days of ideas-sharing, business development and networking“.

The Tax Free World Association set up this annual event to stage luxury brands operating in the travel retail channels and it was great to see 470 plus exhibiting companies.

Highlights of the TFWA Conference

As a supplier with a great deal of experience dealing with brands and airport outlet management companies in the travel retail sector, we had a number of client meetings to attend. We made a flying visit knowing that when we arrived, we would just miss Gen Colin Powell’s conference address. The retired general and 65th US Secretary of State was talking in the wake of previous speakers at the event who have included Kofi Annan, Bob Geldof and Seb Coe.

TFWA-1The general feeling at the show was one of positivity and growth. Despite various violent and political upheavals across the globe of late, there appeared to be a real feeling of optimism amongst exhibitors and visitors alike. Many exhibitors were providing real evidence of the continued growth in the African, Chinese, Indian and South American travel retail markets, with over 50% of visitors to the show coming from outside Europe. This is why the travel retail sector currently represents a €50 billion business with, for example, BWS representing €8 billion of that figure, with year-on-year growth of 2.5% in standard spirit sales and 7.6% in premium spirit sales.


This event in Cannes never fails to deliver on the glamour, but also delivered on the weather this year which meant the scene felt even better in the early hours of the morning (particularly when Nile Rodgers is rounding off the gig!).

Really for us, the only downside was that we weren’t there long enough!

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