Following four years of litigation DFS Guam L.P. has emerged victorious in its challenge to the airport concession agreement awarded to Lotte Duty Free Guam in 2013.
Guam Superior Court Judge Arthur Barcinas effectively voided that agreement by granting summary judgment to DFS. Now Guam International Airport/A.B. Won Pat International Airport Authority, Guam has appealed that ruling to the Guam Supreme Court.
The release quotes GIAA Executive Manager Charles H. Ada II, a central figure in the granting of the long disputed concession agreement: “With all due respect, GIAA strongly disagrees with Judge Barcinas’ decision. The procurement for the airport specialty retail contract was an open, transparent and fair process for all the interested parties, including and most especially DFS, which was the exclusive incumbent operator at the airport for approximately 40 years.”
Ada further said that DFS came in third in the bidding and only commenced its protest after Lotte won the award.
The contract between the airport and Lotte began in May, 2013. The company has paid about $70 million of the $154 million in minimum rent it is obligated to pay over the term of the contract and has also made $23 million in capital improvements at the airport.
According to the release, Lotte’s minimum annual guaranteed rent is more than triple the $5 million that DFS was paying under its previous contracts.