Global Blue and Bank of China held the Signing Ceremony for the launch of Tax Free Shopping in Shanghai at Parkview Hotel on 27th March, 2017.

The ceremony was attended by Mr.Liu Min (Deputy General Manager of Wealth Management and Private Banking Department of Bank of China) and Jacques Stern (Global Blue CEO), who delivered a speech during the ceremony, along with government officials. Witnessed by Mr. Xu Wenjie (Deputy Director of the Shanghai Commerce Department) Global Blue and Bank of China Shanghai Branch, along with merchants including WOO, Reel Department Store, Value Retail Group and Shoubai Culture, signed the Service Agreement. A total of 50 merchants attended the ceremony.


A successful Shanghai launch

Since July 2015, travellers in Shanghai have been able to save 9% on their purchases as China introduced its first Tax Free Shopping scheme for foreign visitors. The Shanghai scheme is among the first of its kind in mainland China, allowing eligible travellers to reclaim the VAT imposed by the Chinese government, when making purchases within the country.

During the ceremony, both parties accepted responsibility to cooperate in the promotion of Shanghai’s Tax Free Shopping scheme to local merchants, and to encourage local retailers to sign up to the scheme. Global Blue provides a consultancy service to retailers for Tax Free Shopping registration. It also provides licensed retailers with ongoing training to sales staff and consults on the processes surrounding the issuing and completion of VAT refunds. In addition to this merchant support, Global Blue manages marketing activities inside and outside China to increase traveller awareness of the VAT refund scheme.


Commitment from leading retailers

Since its launch, 259 stores in Shanghai have signed up to the Tax Free Shopping scheme, including major department stores (e.g. Bailian Group’s department stores, Takashimaya and Parkson), luxury brands (e.g. Richemont Group’s merchants, Hermès, Gucci and Louis Vuitton), local retailers (e.g. Laofengxiang Jewellrey, Yuyuan Trade and Silk King etc.) and many high street merchants (e.g. Nanjing Road, Huaihai Road and Lujiazui).

Since the beginning of their partnership in November 2016, under the instruction of Shanghai municipal, Global Blue has worked with Bank of China and provided training sessions to Tax Free Shopping stores on a regular basis. Up to March 2017, Global Blue has trained 259 stores with more than 600 stores staff, and has provided marketing collateral and Tax Free Shopping signage to them. During the same period, Global Blue collaborated with Bank of China on sell-in activities – there will be 30 Tax Free Shopping merchants affiliated in quarter one – and is expected to affiliate around 400 new merchants to the scheme by end of year 2017.


Refund agency agreement

Both organisations also signed a nationwide refund agency agreement, confirming that Global Blue has been named by Bank of China as a banking refund partner for returning Chinese shoppers across the country, which covers over 30 countries where Global Blue manages Tax Free Shopping operations. Bank of China will operate refund counters from 10 branches in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, and is expected to approach more Chinese cities in the future. Global Blue will take advantage of its global network, partners and merchants to promote the China Refund Agency service, making it easier for Chinese consumers to claim overseas refund back at home.


Jacques Stern, Global Blue CEO commented: “The launch of this partnership with Bank of China has been a great success and we are grateful for the continued spirit of cooperation shown between our two organisations. Since November we have seen strong adoption from merchants in Shanghai, who recognise the opportunity that this scheme represents for their businesses and the local economy. This is an exciting time for Shanghai’s retail sector as we continue to work with all our partners in the city to deliver a truly world class Tax Free Shopping operation.”

Mr. Liu Min, General Manager of Wealth Management and Private Banking Department of Bank of China added: “The launch of this partnership with Bank of China is the result of China’s development, which has been deeply connected to worldwide travel. This mutual cooperation brings convinience to Chinese outbound tourists, but also brings the foreign inbound tourists convinience. Global Blue’s experience of promoting and supporting Tax Free services around the world has made it a valuable partner during this process. We look forward to working with them and our merchant partners to attract high-spending international travellers to our city and make Shanghai the most competitive Tax Free Shopping market in China, and to provide a more intelligent and wide ranging service to Chinese tourists.”


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Media Contact

Duncan Skehens, AVP Corporate Communications

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About Us

Global Blue invented the concept of Tax Free Shopping more than 35 years ago and is now the worldwide industry leader, delivering Globe Shoppers the best shopping experience and creating value for retailers and partners through a range of products and services:

• Global Blue’s Tax Free Shopping solutions allow thousands of retailers, including mos of the world’s best luxury, fast fashion and department store brands, to quickly and safely offer Globe Shoppers savings of up to 19% when shopping in 300,000 stores around the world

• Global Blue’s Dynamic Currency Conversion solutions allow merchants in 75,000 outlets around the world to offer foreign customers a simple and cost efficient way to pay in their domestic currency

• Global Blue’s SHOP is a targeted print and online media platform, enabling merchants to speak directly to Globe Shoppers and attract more international visitors through their doors

Global Blue operates in 51 countries, employing 1,800 people worldwide. For the period April 2015 to March 2016, Global Blue powered more than 30 million Tax Free Shopping and 12 million Dynamic Currency Conversion transactions. These totalled €21 billion worth of sales in store.

In addition, through the publication of over nine million SHOP magazines and maps, and the creation of a wide range of online content, Global Blue helps its retail partners reach and engage with more than 30 million Globe Shoppers annually.

For more information, visit