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Pictured at the relaunch of Shannon Duty Free were 1940's Papparazzo James Sexton, Marilyn Munroe lookalike Caroline Flynn and Bell Boy Alan Power. Photograph by Press 22

Shannon Duty Free goes back to its roots

Shannon Duty Free went back to its roots with a relaunch of the World’s Duty Free at a gala ceremony in Shannon on Monday night.

Former and current Shannon Duty Free workers celebrated with some famous faces from the past during 40s-inspired entertainment at Shannon Airport.

Reverting back to its original title – Shannon Duty Free, which is a world renowned brand name, the relaunch sees the introduction of new signage and branding, a new international supplier ,Gebr Heinemann, while new product lines and layouts are in the process of being implemented in a bid to establish a more effective, exciting and profitable retail outlet.

Gebr Heinemann are also the oldest in the world in their field of duty free supply, making the new partnership a unique blend of histories.

Guests and passengers alike were treated to a performance by a highly regarded Dean Martin tribute act, and passers-by had to look twice as Marilyn Monroe’s double was “papped” by 1940s reporters, as bell-boys held the doors open.

Established almost 70 years ago, the duty free at Shannon Airport is the first and oldest duty free in the world.  This pioneering initiative in Shannon spawned a world-wide industry with thousands of Duty Free Shops around the world now generating billion of euros in revenue annually.

Starting out from humble beginnings, Shannon Duty Free now offers an incredible 60 brands including top names in Irish and European products.

Among other popular brands available at the airport duty free are Jameson, Pernod, and local brands Knappogue Whiskey and Bunratty Meade and Poitin from County Clare. Locally produced Irish smoked salmon and Irish confectionaries are also popular with duty free shoppers.

Speaking at the relaunch in Shannon Airport, Neil Pakey, CEO, Shannon Group said the relaunch will not just be a starting point for a new era of high quality shopping at the airport; it will be a celebration of all that’s gone before.

“Shannon Group are so proud to have invented duty free shopping and we’re excited to relaunch and celebrate what we believe is an exciting future for Shannon Duty Free,” he said.

Gunnar Heinemann, Joint Owner of Gebr Heinemann said the company are very pleased to partner and supply Shannon Duty Free over the coming years.

“As the oldest Duty Free supplier in the world we believe our partnership with Shannon Duty Free, the World’s First Duty Free shop, is both unique and exciting. It is a very important milestone for us in our business and in our efforts to further grow our footprint. We very much hope that our pioneering histories form the foundation of a great future together,” he said.

Dan Danaher

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