Starbucks is opening more than a store a day in China and only plans to get faster there
by Josh Horwitz / 28 March 2017 / Quartz
KFC and McDonald’s have spent the better part of the past year getting out of China. The world’s best-known American coffee chain, however, is only getting bigger there.
Last week during its annual shareholders meeting Starbucks announced that it had reached a minor milestone when it revealed it had opened 2,600 stores in China. That figure is up from a store count of around 2,500 by the end of 2016, and over 2,300 from the start of October, when the company’s most recent financial year ended.
That means that almost 10% percent of the company’s stores—both company-operated ones and licensed outlets—now reside in the China. In 2009 the country was home to just 2.9% of Starbucks stores around the world.
Company data show that during the company’s fiscal 2016, China surpassed Japan (pdf, pg 4) as the company’s number-two market for company-owned stores—the outlets that generate a majority of Starbucks’ revenue. By January 2017, it had 1,212 wholly-owned stores there.
The company’s growth comes as China’s rising middle class, which has a taste for the cosmopolitan, sent sales for fresh-brewed coffee served at retail restaurants surging. Research firm Euromonitor International estimates that the market size for coffee served in cafes hit 20 billion yuan (about $2.9 billion USD) in 2016, up from a mere 1.1 billion yuan 10 years earlier. Read more…