Tribulations to Triumph: The answers revealed

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

YSChoi and MM

We had a fantastic reaction to our competition offering two lucky readers a free (and signed) copy of YS Choi’s new book ‘From Tribulations to Triumph’, the former Lotte Duty Free President’s story of the rise and rise of Korean duty free.

As I told you on my last Blog, Mr Choi (pictured above left with me in Seoul in 2012) is the great pioneer of Korean duty free. He was the CEO and later President of Lotte Duty Free and the President of the Korea Duty Free Association from 2008 to 2012. He was the driving force behind the remarkable rise of South Korea’s travel retail industry, which has seen it grow from a single airport store in 1962 to its current status as the world’s leading duty free market.

YS Choi book

The book is a fabulous read and I’m only sorry that I have just two copies to give away. To enter the competition draw, readers had to answer four questions correctly:

1)      What does the Korean term Hallyu mean?

2)      At what major airport dating back to its very beginnings did DFS score a triple tender triumph in 2012?

3)      What was Lotte Duty Free’s first overseas airport duty free location?

4)      What was ‘Chuck’ Feeney’s real first name?

As I said in my earlier Blog: “The questions may look easy. But I’m willing to bet that there won’t be many correct answers.”

Given that numbers one, two and four were pretty straightforward, that meant number three was the tricky one. And so it proved.

We had 20 entries, of which everyone answered questions one, two (bar two) and four correctly. Some, notably former DFS management, went even further with question four, providing Mr Feeney’s first two names, Charles and Francis.

So, what was the outcome?

Firstly the answers.

1)      Literally translated as ‘Korean wave’, the term is used also to describe the booming popularity of Korean culture, particularly relating to pop and other entertainment.

2)      One person opted for Honolulu, certainly right at the heart of DFS’s origins but not the subject of a tender in 2012. Another went for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), a contract victory for DFS in 2012 but not a ‘triple triumph’. Yes the answer was Hong Kong International Airport.

3)      Aha, not so easy after all. Understandably, many entrants said Soekarno-Hatta International, Jakarta, certainly a breakthrough moment for Lotte internationally. But, as several other eagle-eyed observers (and clear followers of The Moodie Report) observed, the correct answer was actually Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport, where Lotte at one time (and long before Jakarta) sub-let space from Dufry (a store that has since closed). Well-known industry drinks executive Richard Ferne produced the cleverest answer – Jeju Island – which indeed was Lotte’s first ‘offshore’ store but not for the intent of this competition deemed ‘overseas’. Sorry Richard. Good try but no cigar.

4)      Charles Francis. But we accepted Charles.

So, who got all four right?

1)      Jonathan Holland, Owner of Singapore-based Jonathan Holland & Associates

2)      Ron Forbes, ex-DFS Management Information Systems Manager (now retired)

3)      Hans Rijfkogel, Director, Asia Marketing Service, Taiwan

4)      Michael Field, General Manager Calgary International Airport, The Nuance Group

5)      Ivo Favotto, General Manager Duty Free for operations in Australia, New Zealand and Noumea, LS travel retail

After a draw featuring numbers one to five, the following two readers will receive a signed copy of the book (though we’ll do our best through the wonderful Mr Choi to track down three more copies):

1)      Michael Field

2)      Ron Forbes

If both winners could send me their preferred mailing addresses, we will take care of the rest.

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  • Dear Martin,

    Thanks for sharing about that book. For the ones who weren’t lucky enough to win a free copy, may we ask you how to get our hands on an English version, since the book is not (yet?!..) available on Amazon or similar publishers?

    Thanks in advance & have a nice week!