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Campari Group optimistic about GTR

Aperol owner Campari Group expects global travel retail sales to return to 2019 levels by 2023.

Aperol Campari Group
Campari Group’s portfolio includes the iconic orange Aperol

Speaking to The Spirits Business last month (September), Leigh Irvine, managing director of Campari Group global travel retail (GTR), said things were looking up for the channel.

For example, in the company’s financial results for the first half of 2021, GTR sales in Southern Europe, Middle East and Africa grew by 24.3% after the initial lifting of travel restrictions.

Irvine said: “Optimistically, I think we will be in a much better space than we’ve been by the middle of 2022, and certainly we’re anticipating 2019 numbers by 2023.”

He added: “The initial phase [of the pandemic] was incredibly frustrating because we were on a massive roll. The momentum we had [before the pandemic] was really gratifying. We saw brands that we’d put in place gather pace over time, and, come the end of 2019 and early 2020, were at top speed.

“We were the fastest-growing business in GTR. The results that were focused on in 2019 were on two main brands: The Glen Grant and Aperol.”

Brands given GTR boost

To help recover sales in GTR and drive momentum, Campari Group has given The Glen Grant a design overhaul.

“Once we come out and we start reactivating the brand [in GTR], it will be about re-establishing it but with a new look and feel,” Irvine added. “The liquid part of the brand will always be at the core of its appeal.

“But a lot of our work will be about establishing that brand in the mind of the consumer, and it will be a lot more visually-focused compared with where we were.”

Irvine also said Campari Group plans to push its Wild Turkey Bourbon brand in the GTR channel.

“That will be the next taxi off the rank for us,” he said. “We’ve done some amazing work with the global team on developing a range of Bourbons that have genuine uniqueness.

“We have a real price ladder of options for the travelling consumer, each with a clearly communicated reason to exist.

“There’s a huge opportunity in the premium and premium-plus segments in American whiskey, and I think we’ve developed a range that will give us first-mover advantage to talk to the consumer who’s hungry for products in that space.”

For the full in-depth interview with Irvine, see the October 2021 edition of The Spirits Business magazine.

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