John Rimmer resigns as TFWA Managing Director

FRANCE. John Rimmer has opted to step down as Managing Director of Tax Free World Association (TFWA), effective 30 October.

Rimmer was promoted to the role on 1 October 2017 having previously been Conference, Research and Corporate Affairs Director from October 2012.

Earlier in his career he served as Executive Director: Business Development at The Moodie Report (now The Moodie Davitt Report) and before that as Deputy Director Business Development at leading French travel retailer Aelia.

Earlier he won renown as Editor at Duty-Free News International.

John Rimmer has led TFWA with much distinction since assuming the executive leadership role in late 2017

During the time of his mandate as TFWA Managing Director – and with the support of his team, the Board and Management Committee – Rimmer has successfully developed and grown the association’s two major exhibitions as well as all its other elements, TFWA said.

The association said Rimmer has also managed to steer it through the difficult and turbulent period of the pandemic. He will be leaving at a time when TFWA is in a strong position to develop further and to meet new challenges, the organisation added.

TFWA President Erik Juul-Mortensen said: “On behalf of the Management Committee, the Board and the entire team at TFWA, I would like to thank John for his valuable contribution to the development and success of TFWA since he joined, and wish him every success going forward.”

The search for a new Managing Director has been initiated and an announcement will be made in due course, TFWA said.

Comment: John Rimmer has led TFWA with great aplomb over recent years, a tenure that included the biggest challenge in the association’s and travel retail’s history, the COVID-19 pandemic.

The crisis caused the cancellation of key TFWA events in Singapore and Cannes but from late 2021 the association began to rebound, not only through its core in-person events but also the development of a range of virtual activities and other services. Rimmer was key to both the strategy and the recovery.

TFWA is a complex political organisation and the Managing Director’s role an intensely challenging one in having to balance the demands of numerous strong-minded individuals and stakeholders as well as exhibitors (and, on occasion, cantankerous media figures).

Rimmer has not only earned widespread popularity but more importantly won much respect across the travel retail community for his ability to manage those demands and for his admirable professionalism and deep commitment to the business. ✈

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