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Duty-Free Day a hit, says CEO

Natasha Beckles

Duty-Free Day a hit, says CEO

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The Duty-Free Caribbean Holdings Group is reporting record sales from the recently staged Duty-Free Day.
Peter Allan, chief executive officer of the group which includes Cave Shepherd & Company Ltd, Jeweller’s Warehouse, Harrisons, and Colombian Emeralds International, told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY that while some of the sales figures were “still being audited”, there was no doubt that business on that day increased considerably.
He noted that sales outstripped any single day in previous years.
Although Cave Shepherd was the most crowded store that Friday, he said the December 9 initiative of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce & Industry (BCCI)  which allowed locals to purchase goods at duty free prices, saw all member businesses receiving “huge customer support”.
“Everyone seems to have had a very good day,” he said, noting that the increased patronage extended onto Swan Street where many stores had sales “to pull customers”.
Allan added that many shoppers had indicated that was the first time they had shopped in Bridgetown in several years.
Asked whether Duty-Free Caribbean wanted another duty-free initiative or even a VAT-free day, the CEO said the group “would support anything that makes sense for Barbados”.  
“Obviously we would prefer that people spend here [in Barbados],” he said.
While he noted that group’s stores were also located on the West and South Coasts, Allan said it was important to draw people to outlets in The City in order to keep City centres alive.
“We are supportive of the Bridgetown Alive initiative. I believe a prosperous Bridgetown is a prosperous Barbados,” he said.