Lotte has reported duty-free sales increased 15% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2018, as the retailer continues to grow its overseas operations in the wake of domestic pressure.
Total sales for Lotte Duty Free for the first three months of 2018 were ₩1,269.6bn ($1.17bn), with ₩1,222.8bn of these sales coming from the retailer’s operations in South Korea.
These domestic sales were up 14% on the corresponding quarter in 2017, with this growth primarily being driven by Lotte’s downtown duty-free shops, which grew 19% year on year.
However, the retailer’s downtown sales dropped 2% year on year as Lotte still counts the cost of the THAAD crisis.
Away from South Korea, Lotte has continued to grow its international operations and said it would be continuing to do more of this as 2018 progresses.
The retailer’s overseas sales grew 52% year on year, according to the Q1 results, as a result of its growing Vietnamese and Japanese duty-free operations.
In Vietnam, Lotte will be opening its new store at Nha Trang Airport towards the end of the second quarter of this year and it has said it is considering additional launches in both Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.