SEOUL, Aug. 27 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's two leading duty-free operators have bid for the right to sell cigarette and liquor products at Singapore's Changi Airport, industry sources said Tuesday.
No. 1 Lotte Duty Free and second-largest Shilla Duty Free submitted their bids for tobacco and liquor concessions at Changi's four terminals on Monday, the bid deadline.
The concessions will last six years from June next year. Changi is the seventh-busiest airport in the world with its users numbering 64.9 million last year.
Other bidders include industry giants from the United States, Germany, China and northern Europe, according to the sources.
The successful bidder is expected to be chosen around the end of this year or early next year.
Lotte Duty Free, the world's No. 2 duty-free operator by sales, currently operates a cigarette and liquor shop at Incheon International Airport, the main gateway to South Korea.
The company, which in 2012 became the first South Korean duty free operator to make forays overseas, runs 13 duty-free shops at airports in Hanoi, Brisbane, Guam and other locations.
Industry watchers said Shilla Duty Free seems to believe itself to be in pole position thanks to its current operations at Changi Airport.
Late last year, Shilla Duty Free, the world's No. 3 operator, won an extension of its duty-free liquor and beauty concessions at Changi for a two-year period starting from 2020, after the expiration of a six-year concession.
In 2014, Hotel Shilla opened its first duty-free outlet at Changi Airport. Since then, Hotel Shilla has been operating duty-free shops at four terminals at the Singapore airport.
Shilla Duty Free, owned by Hotel Shilla Co., also operates duty-free shops at Hong Kong International Airport on Chek Lap Kok Island and Incheon International Airport.
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