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Starbucks Corporation is an American global coffee company and coffeehouse chainbased in Seattle, Washington.

Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world, with 20,891 stores in 62 countries, including 13,279 in the United States, 1,324 in Canada, 989 in Japan, 851 in China, 806 in the United Kingdom, 556 in South Korea, 377 in Mexico, 291 in Taiwan, 206 in the Philippines, 179 in Turkey, [1] 171 in Thailand, and 167 in Germany. Starbucks locations serve hot and cold beverages, whole-bean coffee, microground instant coffee, fullleaf teas, pastries, and snacks. Most stores also sell packaged food items, hot and cold sandwiches, and items such as mugs and tumblers. Starbucks Evenings locations also offer a variety of beers, wines, and [3] appetizers after 4pm. Through the Starbucks Entertainment division and Hear Music brand, the company also markets books, music, and film. Many of the company's products are seasonal or specific to the locality of the store. Starbucks-brand ice cream and coffee are also offered at grocery stores. From Starbucks' founding in 1971 in Seattle as a local coffee bean roaster and retailer, the company has [4] expanded rapidly. Since 1987, Starbucks has opened on average two new stores every day. Starbucks [5] had been profitable as a local company in Seattle in the early 1980s but lost money on its late 1980s expansion into the Midwest and British Columbia. Its fortunes did not reverse until 1990 when it registered [6] a small profit. By the time it expanded into California in 1991 it had become trendy. The first store outside the United States or Canada opened in the mid-1990s, and overseas stores now constitute [7] almost one third of Starbucks' stores. The company planned to open a net of 900 new stores outside of [8] the United States in 2009, but has announced 300 store closures in the United States since 2008.

Sale and expansion[edit]

Starbucks at the Forbidden City, Beijing, China

In 1984, the original owners of Starbucks, led by Jerry Baldwin, took the opportunity to purchase [15] Peet's. During the 1980s total sales of coffee in the USA were falling, but sales of specialty [16] coffee increased, forming 10% of the market in 1989, compared to 3% in 1983. By 1986 the company [16] [17] had 6 stores in Seattle and had only just begun to sellespresso coffee. In 1987, the original owners sold the Starbucks chain to former employee Howard Schultz, who rebranded his Il Giornale coffee outlets as Starbucks and quickly began to expand. In the same year, Starbucks opened its first locations [18] outside Seattle at Waterfront Station in Vancouver, British Columbia, and Chicago, Illinois. By 1989 there were 46 stores across the Northwest and Midwest in 1989 and Starbucks was roasting over [16] 2,000,000 pounds (910,000 kg) of coffee a year. At the time of its initial public offering on the stock market in June 1992, Starbucks had grown to 140 outlets and had a revenue of $73.5m, up from $1.3m in 1987. Its market value was $271m. The 12% portion of the company sold raised the company around

$25m which would help it double the number of stores over the next two years. By September 1992, [14] the share price had risen 70% to over 100 times the earnings per share of the previous year.


Expansion to new markets and products[edit]

The first Starbucks location outside North America opened in Tokyo, Japan, in 1996. Starbucks entered [21] the U.K. market in 1998 with the $83 million acquisition of the then 65-outlet, UK-based Seattle Coffee Company, re-branding all the stores as Starbucks. In September 2002, Starbucks opened its first store in Latin America, at Mexico City. In 1999, Starbucks experimented with eateries in the San Francisco Bay area through a restaurant chain [22] called Circadia. These restaurants were soon "outed" as Starbucks establishments and converted to Starbucks cafes. In October 2002, Starbucks established a coffee trading company in Lausanne, Switzerland to handle [23] purchases of green coffee. All other coffee-related business continued to be managed from Seattle. In April 2003, Starbucks completed the purchase of Seattle's Best Coffee and Torrefazione Italia from AFC Enterprises for $72m. The deal only gained 150 stores for Starbucks, but according to [24] the Seattle Post-Intelligencer the wholesale business was more significant. In September 2006, rival Diedrich Coffee announced that it would sell most of its company-owned retail stores to Starbucks. This sale includes the company-owned locations of the Oregon-based Coffee People chain. Starbucks converted the Diedrich Coffee and Coffee People locations to Starbucks, although the Portland airport [25] Coffee People locations were excluded from the sale. In August 2003, Starbucks opened its first store in South America in Lima, Peru.
[26] [27] [20]

In 2007, the company opened its first store in Russia, ten years after first registering a trademark there. In March 2008 they purchased the manufacturer of the Clover Brewing System. They began testing the "fresh-pressed" coffee system at several Starbucks locations in Seattle, California, New York and [28] Boston.

Graph showing the growth in the number of Starbucks stores between 1971 and 2011. [18]

In early 2008, Starbucks started a community website, My Starbucks Idea, designed to collect suggestions and feedback from customers. Other users comment and vote on suggestions. Journalist Jack Schofield noted that "My Starbucks seems to be all sweetness and light at the moment, which I don't [29] think is possible without quite a lot of censorship". The website is powered by the Salesforce software.

In May 2008, a loyalty program was introduced for registered users of the Starbucks Card (previously simply a gift card) offering perks such as free Wi-Fi Internet access, no charge for soy milk & flavored [30] syrups, and free refills on brewed drip coffee or tea. A store in Seattle known for its use of the corporation's new ideas reopened in the fall 2010 with a [31] modified interior design in which the espresso machines were placed in the middle of the store. On November 14, 2012, Starbucks announced it will purchase Teavana for $620 million dollars in [32] [33] cash and the deal was formally closed on December 31, 2012. On February 1, 2013, Starbucks opened its first store in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

Corporate governance[edit]

Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks

Orin C. Smith was President and CEO of Starbucks from 2001 to 2005. Starbucks' chairman and founder, Howard Schultz, has talked about making sure growth does not dilute [37] the company's culture and the common goal of the company's leadership to act like a small company. In January 2008, Schultz resumed his roles as President and CEO after an eight-year hiatus, replacing Jim Donald, who took the posts in 2005 but was asked to step down after sales slowed in 2007. Schultz aims to restore what he calls the "distinctive Starbucks experience" in the face of rapid expansion. Analysts believe that Schultz must determine how to contend with higher materials prices and enhanced competition from lower-price fast food chains, including McDonald's and Dunkin' Donuts. Starbucks announced it will discontinue its warm breakfast sandwich products, originally intended to launch nationwide in 2008, in order to refocus the brand on coffee, but the sandwiches were reformulated to deal [38] with complaints and the product line stayed. On February 23, 2008, Starbucks closed its stores from [39][40] 5:309:00 pm local time to train its baristas.


A typical sales area, this one inPeterborough, UK, showing a display of food and the beverage preparation area

Starbucks is primarily known for selling coffee, but also sells other hot and cold beverages, pastries, sandwiches and other snacks. A "Skinny" line of drinks rolled out in 2008, offering lower-calorie and sugar-free versions of the company's offered drinks which use skim milk and are sweetened by a choice of artificial sweetener (such [41][42] as Sweet'N Low, Splenda, Equal), or one of the company's sugar-free syrup flavors. Starbucks [43] stopped using milk originating from rBGH-treated cows in 2007. In June 2009, the company announced that it would be overhauling its menu and selling salads and [44] baked goods without high-fructose corn syrup or artificial ingredients. This move was expected to [44] attract health- and cost-conscious consumers and will not affect prices. Starbucks introduced a new line of instant coffee packets, called VIA "Ready Brew", in March 2009. It was first unveiled in New York City with subsequent testing of the product also in Seattle, Chicago and London. The first two VIA flavors include Italian Roast and Colombia, which were then rolled out in October 2009, across the U.S. and Canada with Starbucks stores promoting the product with ablind "taste challenge" of the instant versus fresh roast, in which many people could not tell the difference between [who?] the instant and fresh brewed coffee. Analysts speculated that by introducing instant coffee, Starbucks [45] would devalue its own brand. Starbucks began selling beer and wine at at some US stores in 2010. As of April 2012, it is available at [46] seven locations and others have applied for licenses. In 2011, Starbucks introduced its largest cup size, the Trenta, which can hold 31 ounces. In September 2012, Starbucks announced the Verismo, a consumer-grade single-serve coffee machine that uses [48] sealed plastic cups of coffee grounds, and a "milk pod" for lattes. On November 10, 2011, Starbucks Corporation announced that it had bought juice company Evolution Fresh for $30 million in cash and plans to start a chain of juice bars starting in around middle of 2012, venturing into territory staked out by Jamba Inc. Its first store released in San Bernardino, California and [49] plans for a store in San Francisco will be launched in early 2013. In 2012, Starbucks began selling a line of iced refresher beverages in its stores which contain an extract from green arabica coffee beans. The beverages are fruit flavored and contain caffeine but, according to the company, "with none of the coffee flavor". Starbucks' green coffee extraction process involves [50] soaking the beans in water.

Starting June 25, 2013, calorie counts will be posted on menus for drinks and pastries in all of their stores [51] in the U.S. Some states had already required this.





3 US fl oz (89 ml)

Smallest size. Espresso shots.


8 US fl oz (240 ml)

Smaller of the two original sizes


12 US fl oz (350 ml)

Larger of the two original sizes

Grande 16 US fl oz (470 ml)

Italian for "large"


20 US fl oz (590 ml), 26 US fl oz (770 mL) Italian for "twenty"

Trenta 30 US fl oz (890 ml)

Italian for "thirty"

Starbucks entered the tea business in 1999 when it acquired the Tazo brand for US$8.1 million. [33][54] late 2012, Starbucks paidUS$620 million to buy Teavana. As of November 2012, there is no intention of marketing Starbucks' products in Teavana stores, though the acquisition will allow the [53] expansion of Teavana beyond its current main footprint in shopping malls.


Coffee quality[edit]
Kevin Knox, who was in charge of coffee quality at Starbucks from 1987 to 1993, recalled on his blog in 2010 how George Howell, coffee veteran and founder of the Cup of Excellence, had been appalled at [28][55] the dark roasted beans that Starbucks was selling in 1990. Talking to the New York Times in 2008, Howell stated his opinion that the dark roast used by Starbucks does not deepen the flavor of coffee, but [28] instead can destroy purported nuances of flavor. The March 2007 issue of Consumer Reports compared American fast-food chain coffees and ranked Starbucks behind McDonald's Premium Roast. The magazine called Starbucks coffee "strong, but burnt and bitter enough to make your eyes water instead of open