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The relationship between airport authority and concessionaire is one of the most critical, yet often under-rated elements of airport retail success. So chances are that when you find an airport with thriving commercial revenues, the human relationships are in pretty good shape too.
Nowhere is that more the case than at Toronto Pearson International Airport, where the Greater Toronto Airports Authority and its duty free retailer The Nuance Group talk of each other in the warmest partnership terms.
But now we’ve discovered the real secret behind the relationship. It’s all down to a Baileys Irish Cream promotion and a Shiatsu massage chair.
During a whistle-stop tour of Pearson’s splendid new Pier F and stunning new international store, we caught up with Nuance North American CEO Dick Rendek and Greater Toronto Airports Authority General Manager Concessions Dan Driedzic, who, in the true spirit of landlord/retailer partnership, both shared the chairman’s role to perfection. Hours after winging his way back from Singapore Changi (where Nuance had bid on the liquor & tobacco contract), Dick (left) was soon nodding off, the soft vibrations of the shiatsu massage ensuring his Baileys was not shaken and he was not stirred. Later Dan (right) took up prime position, staying wide awake and showing the laid-back authority that he is famous for.