Starbucks says India success exceeds expectations

As it completed two years of operations in the country, American coffee chain Starbucks today said its success in India has exceeded its expectations.

Tata Starbucks, a 50:50 joint venture with Tata Global Beverages, had opened its first outlet in Mumbai in October 2012.

"In the last two years, we have been able to grow our brand...sucess in India has exceeded our expectations. Our customers have really embraced us.... They enjoy the unique beverages that we offer them," Starbucks Coffee President, (China and Asia Pacific), John Culver told PTI.

He further added: "We are very happy with the progress of the growth of the market here. More importantly, with future prospects of the growth for us. We have taken a very long-term view on the opportunity that India presents and build our brand the right way." 

When asked about expansion plans and delay in opening outlets, Culver said: "I am not going to comment on specifics.

But, we are very happy with the growth rate in India. India is our fastest growing new market in our history. We pleased with the pace of growth. We are not going to chase numbers." 

Soon after the launch, the company had announced plans to open 50 cafes in the country in 2012, entailing an investment of Rs 400 crore. The plan, however, have got delayed.

Tata Starbucks has also begun exporting locally sourced and roasted Starbucks India Estates Blend to in select stores in Asia and in the US through online channel, Culver said.

The company also said that it is innovating in its beverage and food menu to add more localised tastes in its product offerings.

At present, there are 59 Starbucks outlets in six cities in the country.

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