TUMI, the leading international premium travel accessories and lifestyle brand, has unveiled its latest South African flagship store in Cape Town and a renovated Sandton City outlet. It will launch a new online store shortly.
The latest addition to TUMI’s retail network is situated at one of Cape Town’s most prestigious and busiest addresses – Canal Walk shopping centre. Located in this popular mall, South Africa’s jetsetters and international visitors alike will be able to experience a brand which appeals to the individual accustomed to business-class travel, top hotels, and who also wants the ultimate in luggage.
In addition to quality luggage and travel bags, TUMI stores offer business cases and travel accessories such as jackets and electronic equipment. The new store is the first bespoke, stand-alone TUMI store in Cape Town, enabling consumers to experience in the appropriate setting its world-class business and travel essentials. These blend flawless functionality with an aesthetic of ingenuity.
“The TUMI brand is widely known in its US home market, as well as Europe, as an exclusive product. It is for this reason we opted for the upscale location of Canal Walk, which attracts a high percentage of international visitors, as well as discerning South African travellers,” says Tom O’Flaherty, managing director of Tumi Southern Africa.
TUMI is marketed and distributed by a joint venture (JV) between Tumi Inc. and local businessmen, Tom O’Flaherty and Rob Kunze. The JV took local control of theTUMI brand in 2017 and the team set out a comprehensive expansion and marketing plan. The brand has seen a 10 percent increase in units sold, which has been the result of a more diverse range of products being stocked, and pricing which has become more competitive comparative to international prices.
The direct supply chain to TUMI enabled the JV to reduce the previous prices, he explains. “The JV also enables us to bring the latest products to the market much quicker than was previously the case.”
The new Canal Walk store joins the brand’s recently renovated outlet in Sandton, together with a licensed store at OR Tambo International Airport. The brand’s choice of store locations at exclusive retail centres and airports reflects TUMI’s business strategy for African expansion. “We aim to build the brand image in key, upmarket shopping precincts. We have a growth strategy which will roll out as appropriate locations become available. We have two target markets: South Africa’s fast growing high-income sector which travels outbound primarily on business; and the increasing number of inbound international tourists visiting especially Cape Town and our game reserves,” says O’Flaherty.
TUMI is expanding into a growth market: a study by Grant Thornton International published in January 2017 shows that South Africa’s outbound tourism has grown by 6,2 percent between 2006 and 2015 and is set to continue to accelerate. Furthermore, 54 percent of outward travellers originate from Gauteng, and 25 percent from Cape Town.
The Cape Town TUMI store is located on the upper level of the Canal Walk shopping centre and the Johannesburg store is on the lower level of Sandton City.
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