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Tappoo plans to open Newslink store in Nadi Airport as expansion plans take shape – 13/11/05

The Tappoo Group of Companies, one of Asia’s most innovative travel retailers, is preparing to open a Newslink outlet at Nadi International Airport.

Newslink is 100% owned by Hachette Distribution Services (HDS) and operates retail outlets in travel and commuter terminals in Australia. It operates 48 travel retail outlets in Australia and manages 10 stores at Singapore Changi Airport on behalf of HDS.

Chairman Kanti Tappoo told The Moodie Report that he was delighted to be bringing such a prominent brand to Fiji. “We’ve just submitted the plans to the airport authority and we should be operational by February,” he said. “It’s the first international branded franchise in the airport.” The store will be well-positioned near immigration.

The company is enjoying a strong year. “We’ve seen +11% passenger growth year-on-year during 2005, mainly from Australians and New Zealanders,” Kanti Tappoo said.

As previously reported ,Tappoo was last year given a ten-year contract extension from 2006 at Nadi plus extra retail space. The retailer is focusing on the traditional categories as they are most popular with the core Australasian clientele.

In other news, Tappoo recently opened the Serevi Café, named in honour of Fiji’s most famous rugby player and Tappoo Corporate Ambassador Waisale Serevi. Kanti Tappoo said that Serevi is probably the most recognizable name in Fiji.

The company is also set to extend its downtown operations with a new luxury goods store opening at the Sofitel Hotel in Denerau later this year. “We are putting all our combined expertise into making this outlet something remarkable,” said Kanti Tappoo.

Tappoo has also announced a joint venture with CP Investments of New Zealand and Fiji’s largest indigenous investment company Fijian Holdings. As a result Tappoo is now part owner of the former Dominion Hotel in Nadi.

The joint venture is called Upfront Investment Limited. Accor, managers of the Sofitel and Novotel resorts, runs the hotel under its Mercure banner. Kanti Tappoo said the company may acquire other key properties in the tourism industry.

The Tappoo Group of Companies also submitted a bid in the recent duty free tender at Wellington Airport in New Zealand.

Source: A Report by Martin Moodie.

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