The Horry County Airport Advisory Committee hopes the Horry County Administration Committee sees the money that could be made by allowing the Hudson Group to open three kiosks in the Myrtle Beach International Airport.
The committee voted Wednesday to recommend the Hudson Group, who already has a retail concession in the airport and is in the second year of a 10-year contract, to open three merchandise kiosks on the departure level of the airport. Now, the Administration Committee will discuss the amendment to the lease and decide if it will send the recommendation to the full County Council.
“What it does is it allows us to get the [minimum annual guarantee] up and when they pass that, then we start getting a percentage of that,” said Pat Apone, interim director of airports for Horry County.
Currently, Hudson Group pays a minimum annual guarantee of $550,000 annually, which has a guaranteed revenue point built into it. Based on sales performance or number of passengers at the airport, Hudson Group pays the greater of the two based on a formula. So, it either pays a percentage rent if sales exceed certain sales breakpoints or pay a fee based on the number of passengers who board planes at the airport.
By having the three kiosks, airport officials hope to increase Hudson’s profitability enough that it produces a percentage profit for the airport.
Apone said the Hudson Group is already on track to show an increase in sales, having made a $200,000 profit in the first quarter of the new terminal opening earlier this year compared to the same time in 2012. Money raised from the new kiosks, if approved by the county, would go into a general fund for the airport.
The kiosks will feature items like sunglasses, destination-themed gifts and snacks.
Apone said there is no concern about fitting the kiosks in the new terminal.
“The terminal was designed for something like this,” she said. “It was anticipated that we would be expanding concessions.”
Contact JASON M. RODRIGUEZ at 626-0301 or follow him at Twitter.com/TSN_jrodriguez.