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Starbucks’ world domination is not yet complete

October 8, 2006

The Seattle-based company recently announced that it plans to expand its store base from a current 12,000 units to 40,000 globally. The brand expects at least half of those stores will be in the US. The company obviously believes that the brand can sustain this level of expansion and that stores don’t cannibalize each other.

In the past, the company has demonstrated how stores in close proximity to each other, manage to fuel growth.

However, this level of expansion will seriously challenge the brand on a number of fronts. Ubiquity has its advantages, but your brand can also pay a heavy price if you are not careful. Major issues for Starbucks will be to ensure that it continues to keep the experience fresh, the recent NYC Salon initiative was a great example, in addition, they are going to need to move more aggressively into food, something they appear to be doing already.

The challenge with food, is to ensure that like the rest of the brand, quality is priority no1, which could be hard.

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