The 2012 Annual General Meeting of ETRC has elected Sarah Branquinho as its President. Outgoing President Frank O’Connell will remain on the board of the ETRC as Immediate Past President and Strategic Advisor. At last year’s 2011 Annual General Meeting, Branquinho was unanimously backed as the successor to Frank O’Connell in preparation for the hand over.
Accepting the position, she reflected on the ETRC and the year ahead saying, “We are very grateful for the time Frank has given to the industry over the past 24 years, many of which serving the industry’s trade associations, and I am personally delighted that ETRC will still benefit from his wise counsel. Under Frank’s leadership, the ETRC has deservedly built a reputation amongst governments and regulatory bodies as a professional organisation representing the duty free and travel retail industry in Europe effectively.
With a range of challenges to the industry developing at the global and European level, as well as in individual countries, the role of the ETRC is more important now than ever before. I will continue to build upon the work Frank has done as President, and I am looking forward to working closely with the managing and supervisory boards of ETRC, the national associations, ETRC’s corporate members and the wider industry in the year ahead.”
Branquinho is an active campaigner on duty free and travel retail industry issues. After gaining industry support for the first Tax Free World Exhibition (1985) she served as Commercial Director until 1996, Branquinho went on to be appointed Secretary General of the European Travel Research Foundation, where she managed both the ambitious research projects that underpinned the lobby to save intra-EU duty free and the EU-wide consumer mobilisation programme. Branquinho subsequently joined BAA and its retail company World Duty Free. Following Autogrill’s acquisition of WDF, her remit as Director, Business Relationships and External Affairs, has been extended group-wide across the newly formed World Duty Free Group.
The other members of the ETRC managing board are Jacques Parson (Vice-President Marketing), Fulvio Fassone (Vice-President Business Development) and Erik Juul-Mortensen (Vice-President Brands).
At the meeting, the board confirmed that the registered name of the association had been changed. The ETRC has been registered since 2005 as ETRC Ltd and it was decided that it should now register its full name to protect the association. However, under English company law, private organisations cannot register as a Council. Therefore, the new full name will be the European Travel Retail Confederation, although for communication purposes it will still be known as the ETRC.
Over the past few months, the ETRC has been upgrading its website, which is said to go live soon. As part of the process, it was also decided to modernise the ETRC logo.