Starbucks Case Study

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The original Starbucks opened in Seattle, Washington, in 1971 by three partners: English teacher Jerry Baldwin, history teacher Zev Siegel and writer Gordon Bowker. The three were inspired by Alfred Peet, whom they personally knew, to open their first store in Pike Place Market to sell high quality coffee beans and equipment. In 1982 Howard Schultz joined Starbucks as director of retail operations and marketing. After traveling to Italy and discovering the Italian coffee bar that sold espresso by the cup. When he returned, he wanted to apply that to their business in 1983. Within 2 months they were selling over 700 customers a day. In 1987 the owners of Starbucks Coffee Company decided to sell their business to a group of local investors for $3.7 million. The new investors were told they were going to open 125 Starbucks Coffee stores in the next 5 years. The company started expanding rapidly.

Starbucks is the #1 specialty coffee retailer. Starbucks business model was to sell the company's own premium roasted coffee along with espressos, pastries, coffee accessories and teas. Their business model goal was to expand internationally and to take over other coffee businesses. Starbucks products are:

Coffee: more then 30 blends and single-origin coffees

Handcrafted Beverages: hot and iced espresso, non-coffee blended beverages and Tazo teas

Merchandise: assorted home espresso machines, coffee brewers and grinders, premium chocolate, coffee mugs and gift items

Fresh Food: sandwiches and salads

Entertainment: selection of the best in music, books and film

Starbucks Card: card purchased to be able to swipe and are reusable

Starbucks is currently doing well in the market. There last trade was $22.81 and there yearly high was $37.14. There revenue up to September 2007 is $9.4 million and their gross profit is $5.4 million. Starbucks has an $8 billion Market Capitalization, 20+% annual sales growth rate and 11 years of 5+% comparable store sales revenue growths. Although the price per stock hit a year low, the overall average of the year is very well. Starbucks has very high quality products, although high prices, they pride themselves on satisfying their costumers all the time which separates them from their competitors. This makes their customers come back and spend their money for their products. Starbucks differentiation strategy was offering interesting coffee-related drinks, their unique coffee blending and roasting process,
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