Travel Retail and Duty Free Business Intelligence    Tuesday 21 October 2014

FASHION, LEATHER AND ACCESSORIES

Zippo ready to open first US full-line retail stores in Las Vegas

Published: 11/04/14

Source: ©The Moodie Report

By Melody Ng, Asia Bureau Chief

Following the success of its 14 concept store locations in China, Zippo is now bringing the full retail concept to the US.

The US maker of the windproof pocket lighter and allied lifestyle products is set to open its first US-based retail stores in Las Vegas, at the Luxor Hotel & Casino in early May and the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino later this summer.

The new store is a joint project between Zippo; its distributor in the travel retail market, Sourcing Network International (SNI); Luxor and MGM Grand. CITRA Inc, Zippo's global duty free and travel retail representative, will be supervising this new endeavour.

“Casinos represent an untouched, yet promising retail medium for Zippo, especially considering that Zippo windproof lighters in the luck and gambling category are perennial best sellers,” said Zippo Vice President of Sales and Marketing Mark Paup.

“Today, Zippo is more than lighters and has become a sought-after lifestyle brand. We are excited to work with these MGM properties and SNI to introduce a new array of products to a whole new audience,” Paup added.

Luxor Director of Retail Operations Brett Shannon added: “We are pleased to add Zippo to our collection of retail options at Luxor, and look forward to working with both Zippo and SNI as we open the first store of its kind.” The new facility will be staffed and managed by Luxor’s retail division.

Zippo will feature most of its product line at the Luxor and MGM Grand retail stores, including windproof lighters and lighter products, apparel, bags, fragrances, and small leather goods
Based in Bensalem, Pennsylvania, SNI distributes high-value items to retail locations in casinos, airports, hotels, and other tourist destinations. It will exclusively supply source Zippo products, several of which will be custom designs and exclusive to the new store.

Under its agreement with Zippo, SNI – which services products to over 150 American casinos – is tasked with opening a Zippo concept store or securing product displays in as many of the 150 partner locations as possible. Zippo’s presence in each chosen casino will range from the size of one display case to an entire store section. In some cases, SNI will station its own personnel for sales support.

“Zippo is a name that conjures images of Americana, and its products are set apart by their authenticity and utility,” explained SNI CEO Todd Cohen. “This brand is definitely a great fit for the casino demographic. Our plan is to introduce Zippo products to as many casinos as possible. ”

Sourcing Network International EVP Randall Cohen continued: “We are truly excited to be working with Zippo, a true American icon, and are confident that their new Zippo-branded lifestyle line of accessories will be a sure hit throughout gaming retail.”

Zippo plans to feature the bulk of its expanding product line at the inaugural Luxor and MGM Grand retail stores, including windproof lighters and lighter products, apparel, bags, fragrances, and small leather goods.

The Luxor and MGM Grand locations are the first of three stores planned to open in Las Vegas in the coming year. Product offerings destined for future casinos will vary by location, the brand added.