US coffee chain Starbucks, which opened its seventh store in the country on Wednesday, expects India to be among the top five global markets for the company in the long term. John Culver, President, Starbucks Coffee China and Asia Pacific, said, “We are committed to the Indian market for the long term and we are looking to grow our business aggressively, expand stores, make investments and offer locally relevant innovations.” He did not specify the company’s expansion plans or investment figures but said that India is expected to be among the top five global markets of the company in the long term. This is the company’s flagship store in New Delhi. It already has presence in the NCR region through two stores at the Delhi International Airport, besides four stores in Mumbai.
Starbucks entered the Indian market in October 2012, and its stores operate under a 50:50 joint venture partnership between Starbucks Coffee Co and Tata Global Beverages called Tata Starbucks Ltd. He also said that the company was committed to ethically sourcing and roasting coffee through its partnership with Tata Coffee to elevate the story of the Indian coffee farmer, a unique initiative being undertaken in India. The store at Delhi reflected examples of Indian craft of weaving and sported handicrafts made by local artists. The company has kept the Indian palette in mind as the menu includes Indian cuisine like Murg Makhani Pie, Mutton Seek in Roomali Roti, besides also offering Tata Tazo tea which is a co-branded product under its partnership with Tata Global Beverages. On future locations that have been identified for opening new stores, Avani Saglani Davda, CEO, Tata Starbucks, said India offers diverse growth opportunities and the company will thoughtfully open stores in locations, “where customers want and expect us to be.”
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