Duty Free Dynamics, the company formed in Panama last year initially to distribute Guess watches in the LATAM and Caribbean travel retail markets, announces a new partnership with Zeon Ltd, the global licensee of Braun watches and clocks. The agreement covers the exclusive distribution of Braun watches and clocks for the Travel Retail channel in the Americas and the Caribbean.
Duty Free Dynamics is branching out to represent other brands and product categories in the channel, says Duty Free Dynamics General Manager Guy Bodart. The addition of Braun’s awardwinning collection of clocks and watches to the Duty Free Dynamics portfolio fits in perfectly with this objective, and complements the work that DFD has accomplished so far with the Guess fashion watches.
Bodart, a well-known, respected executive in the world of luxury in Latin America, joined DFD earlier this year after 20 years with Chanel. At Chanel, Bodart served as vice president of sales for Latin America, subsequently becoming president of the Chanel subsidiary in Mexico and later Brazil.
Bodart’s responsibilities at Chanel encompassed all divisions, including fragrance and cosmetics, fashion, and watches. He was instrumental in launching Chanel watches and fashion in the LatAm region, and has in-depth knowledge of every player in the region, both in the local markets and travel retail.
“Duty Free Dynamics has the ability to be a strong multi-category company. Within three years we expect to be handling accessories, electronics, apparel and fragrances & cosmetics, in addition to watches and jewelry,” says Bodart. He adds that “Our objective at DFD is to grow vertically by taking on brands from diverse categories, but at the same time expand geographically by convering airports, duty free zones and border shops in the U.S., Mexico and Canada.”
“We are looking for brands that want to be in Travel Retail in the Americas but cannot afford the resources or time to do it on their own. Basically we are a distributor made up of a young, active and dynamic team with strong spirit. We are pro-active, pro-solution and very sell-out oriented. We offer brands a single voice and single entry point in the complex and vast world of the Travel Retail channel throughout the Americas and the Caribbean.”
“We do what is best for the brand, and we are able to do it quickly. This team, combined with my expertise, creates a powerful tool to bring a brand into the channel and make it grow,” stresses Bodart.
For the present, DFD reports an excellent year for Guess, whose men’s and women’s fashion watches incorporate the Guess image and appeal to young, fashion-driven consumers around the world. Guess watches, the largest licensed watch brand in the world, are available in 114 countries, and growing in travel retail. Citing its state-of-the-art supply chain operation and efficient ‘on-line’ self-management ordering system, DFD reports that it “reintroduced the [Guess] brand as the leader in the fashion watch segment and gained visibility in the best stores throughout the region…in less than 6 months.”
“Our Guess brand is on a roll. We have opened accounts in most of the territory across the Caribbean, Central and South America, and are seeing excellent sell-out. We have new orders from every place we are being sold,” Bodart reports.
DFD has listed the Guess watches with UETA –“where the brand is doing very well,” says Bodart – and is also with Dufry in Argentina and Mexico City, with more Dufry doors to open next year. Duty Free Dynamics’ team of energetic and highly trained, multicultural personnel bring a wide range of experience to the new venture and concentrate on delivering first class customer service.
“We are focusing on moving our products off the shelves, using good visibility at the point of sale and incentivizing the sale staff. We were set up to specialize in travel retail and we understand this market well,” he says. Guess has now taken its fashion expertise and incorporated it into an award-winning Smartwatch, called the Guess Connect. And to appeal to a broader audience, Guess is introducing the new On Demand collection, featuring a lower price point to attract a new customer, selling in duty free in the $110- $180 range. Duty Free Dynamics’ is part of the Liberman Group and is able to capitalize on the financial support and extensive experience of the Panamanian-based multinational. The Group is a major player in an array of industries including energy in Central America, olive oil & winery in Argentina, finance & banking in Uruguay, hospitality and real estate.
DFD was created by the Group to specifically cater to brands aiming to establish a solid presence in the Travel Retail segment throughout the Americas.
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