Major changes at Duty Free Caribbean stores
AS IT CONTINUES to battle a depressed economy and reduced consumer spending, Duty Free Caribbean Holdings is making major changes to two of its Bridgetown retail operations.
Chief development officer Maureen Davis said that not only would six departments in Barbados’ largest department store, Cave Shepherd, be divested and offered to independent operators, but the group would reinvest significantly in the remaining departments.
Furthermore, she said Harrisons Nicholas House would become more brand-oriented in an effort to attract international visitors and young, fashionable local professionals.
Speaking to BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY last Wednesday following the launch of the Victorinox line of luxury luggage and travel items at Harrisons, she said that the company had to try new things and not remain stagnant.
Davis, who has led several retail projects since she joined Cave Shepherd in 1983, explained that the company was expanding the concession programme it started in the 1980s.
It has already invited offers to operate the womenswear, menswear, toiletries and souvenir departments and renovations have begun in the Broad Street store.
“We are going to be hopefully by the end of this year [or] early next year doubling the size of the fragrance and cosmetics [department] so the area that’s currently being renovated will now be just for perfume and the area to the left which we have not done yet . . . is going to be all of the full line brands like Clarins, Lancome, Estee Lauder and Clinique,” she said.
Davis said plans were being put in place to redevelop Cave Shepherd’s top floor in order to increase traffic throughout the store.
She added that Harrisons would eventually feature “branded corners as opposed to categories”.
“Rather than having let’s say a shoe department or a leather department we are really zeroing in on brands themselves.
“We’re starting to bring much more fashion to this store because we need to also differentiate this store from the Cave Shepherd store,” she said.
Davis said new brands would be introduced throughout the year and the company was going after brands like Kate Spade. (NB)