Flight 001, the US-based specialty store for travel products, will expand business in Asia including Thailand to cope with the continued increase in the number of travellers across the region.
Brad John (right) and John Sencion (left), co-founders of Flight 001, join Bandhit Nilchiansakul (centre), marketing director of Retail One, to celebrate the opening of the first Flight 001 specialty store for travel products in Bangkok.
Executives were in Bangkok to officially open its first Thai shop at Siam Discovery Center.
Retail One Co, a subsidiary of luggage distributor Bonny International Co, won the franchise to operate the store under a five-year contract.
Brad John and John Sencion, the co-founders of Flight 001, said the Bangkok store was part of the company's plan to increase sales in Asia to contribute 50% of its revenue by 2015.
The company is looking to open stores in new markets, develop new product lines and build loyalty for its Flight 001 (pronounced "flight one") brand
"We are shifting our focus to Asia because of the continuous increase of travellers across the region," said Mr John.
Japan will be its strategic market in Asia, while Thailand will be its strategic base for the Asean market.
"This century will be Asia's century. I have visited Thailand for the past 25 years and came back again this year. I was very surprised. The country is totally different in terms of businesses, buildings, construction and fashion," Mr John said.
Flight 001 has expanded its international market over the past three years. Thailand is the eighth Asian country where its products are on sale. Its first Japanese store will open in Harajuku next month, with nine more to follow next year.
The company is looking to expand into China, Myanmar and Vietnam in the near future but all stores will be operated on a franchise basis.
Flight 001 plans to explore new markets such as Britain, Germany, France and Brazil to address the growing number of travellers.
Bandhit Nilchiansakul, marketing director of Retail One, said the Flight 001 shop at Siam Discovery covers 80 square metres and provides more than 1,000 products priced from 190 to 10,000 baht.
About 95% of products are imported and prices are 5-10% higher than those offered at Flight 001 stores elsewhere in Asia due to higher import tax.
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- Writer: Pitsinee Jitpleecheep
Position: Business Reporter