EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The experience of air travel has declined over the years, but the retail experience at airports has consistently been elevated as retailers look for new opportunities, such as this newly renovated Tom Bradley International Terminal, featuring 19 retail stores, at the western gateway to the U.S.
Last year, Westfield Concessions Management — the Terminal Concessions Manager for LAX — tapped the Hudson Group, as well as a group of local partners, to build and operate the 19 new shops in the newly renovated international terminal. The list of shops includes five travel essentials stores and 13 specialty retail stores, including luxury brands Emporio Armani, Bulgari, Coach, Michael Kors, Hugo Boss, Tumi, Virgin/Boost and Bliss, along with local favorites Fred Segal, Kitson, See's Candies and Pinkberry.
"This award is a milestone for our partnership group, probably one of the most significant wins in our 25-year history,” said Joe DiDomizio, president & CEO of Hudson Group. “It demonstrates our transition from a company perhaps best known as an excellent newsstand operator to a company at ease with operating international luxury brands. For that we can thank the growing reputation of our marketing and merchandising team, and the support of our parent company, Dufry. As the largest duty free operator in the world, Dufry has relationships with all the top designer and luxury brands. This access has greatly enhanced the portfolio of offerings that we are able to offer to airports."
Working on the joint venture with the Hudson Group is an assembly of L.A. businesses that have their fingers on the pulse of the Los Angeles marketplace. The group includes equity partner Concourse Ventures (Dale Cochran, principal); ACDBE partners Palazzo Concessions (Simeon Stewart and Michael Washington, principals); The Zaman Group (Karim Zaman, principal); MAJ Collection (Julie Jun, principal) and Arandia Designs (Luis Arandia, principal).
The shops will be ready when the terminal re-opens this summer, beginning with a bevy of newsstand brands, including Entertainment Weekly News, CNN Newsstand — Los Angeles, a news/gift store called Angeleno and the newest incarnation of the Hudson News brand, called Hudson.
Hudson Group, the largest duty-paid travel retailer in North America, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of international duty-free travel retailer Dufry AG of Basel, Switzerland. The company operates some 700 Hudson News, Hudson Booksellers, cafes, specialty retail and duty free shops in 70 airports and transportation terminals in the United States and Canada, and additional newsstands in 12 more countries around the world. The combined Dufry/Hudson entity oversees more than 1,200 stores in 44 countries and 155 airports and terminals.