Starbucks India makes way into II tier cities



Starbucks India, a joint venture between Tata Global Beverages and Seattle-based Starbucks Corporation has set up 106 stores in metros in last five years.  They plan to enter tier II cities in FY19. It already has stores spread across Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai, Delhi and Bengaluru. Last October, it celebrated their fifth anniversary in India and intends to close FY18 with 24 new stores, taking the total store count to 115.


CEO at Tata Starbucks Pvt Ltd, Sumitro Ghosh, said “After we enter Kolkata, we are looking at tier II cities to open new stores and are in the process of evaluating them. We are growing fast and will beat the number of new stores opened in FY18 next fiscal. We get compared to the China market a lot, which has over 3,000 Starbucks stores and is growing at 500 stores a year. While China is a 15-year-old market for us, India is a five-year-old one.” India has seen the fastest rollout of stores in history of international markets, he said the company sees India becoming one of its top five markets in the world in the long term.


The CEO further added that “Roughly, Espresso accounts for over 60 per cent of our beverages. Every Americano, Latte, Cappuccino and all of our Frappuccinos are based on the Espresso beverage, which is made from Indian coffee beans sourced from Tata Coffee plantations in Coorg. We also import an Italian blend, and two single-origin blends from Kenya and Sumatra, which we serve in our stores.”


The India Estate blend that is sold in whole bean form over the counter in the company stores here is being sold online in the US and other countries. Tata Nullore Estate’s coffee became the first Indian coffee to be roasted and sold at the company’s home city of Seattle in 2016, which was later rolled out across other Starbucks stores in the US. A second Indian estate specific coffee has been selected to be sold in the US, and will soon be announced, said Ghosh.


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