Hotel Shilla, a South Korean operator of luxury hotels and duty-free shops, has closed a $121 million transaction to buy a 44 percent stake in US duty-free shop operator Travel Retail Group Holdings, known for the in-flight retailing service 3Sixty Duty Free, a filing showed Wednesday.
The deal, closed Tuesday, allowed the hotel and duty-free unit under Samsung to become the second-largest shareholder after 3Sixty Chairman Bernard Klepach. It marks Hotel Shilla’s first investment in a North American entity.
The two parties “will contribute to creating a ‘new’ powerful operator in the Americas region and beyond, ready to compete for all future opportunities in the airport and omnichannel businesses,” they said in a joint statement.
The Florida-based 3Sixty Duty Free is the world’s No. 1 in-flight duty-free shop operator by market share. 3Sixty Duty Free logged a $145,720 net loss for 2018 as it adopted a new tax payment method. The firm recorded an $11.19 million operating profit the same year, similar to the figure for the previous year.
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