History of Starbucks coffee shops

What is Starbucks

Starbucks, an American multinational chain of coffee shops and roasters headquartered in Seattle, which, with more than 30,000 locations , is the largest coffee shop chain in the world and is one of the leading coffee roasters and retailers in as many as 80 countries.

Starbucks offers

Starbucks offers a wide range of coffee experiences from hot to cold beverages. Espresso, cappuccino, latte, filter coffee, iced coffee, as well as matcha, lemonade, tea, pastries, salads and much more.

Most of all, the café is known for its seasonal offerings. Whether it's the Fall Pumpkin Spice Latte or the Christmas GingerbreadLatte, these drinks are simply popular across the board with all customers.

In addition to beverages and food, many stores carry official Starbucks products such as mugs, cups, bags or coffee accessories.

Starbucks Store. Source: mediar.cz

History of Starbucks coffee shops

Origins of Starbucks

Starbucks was founded by Jerry Baldwin, Gordon Bowker and Zev Siegel. They opened their first store in 1971 near the historic Pike Place Market in Seattle.

The first Starbucks store in Seattle. Source: wikipedia.org

The three founders of Starbucks had two things in common: they all came from academia and they all loved coffee and tea.

They invested and borrowed money to open their first store in Seattle and named it "Starbucks" after Starbuck's first friend in Herman Melville's classic novel Moby Dick.

The founders of Starbucks. Source: starbucks.com
The original Starbucks logo. Source: starbucks.com

In the early 1980s, Starbucks openedfour outlets in Seattle, distinguishing itself from its competitors by the superior quality of its freshly roasted coffee.

In 1980, Siegl decided to pursue other interests and left the two remaining partners and Baldwin took over as president of the company.

Howard Schultz - the name that made Starbucks famous

In 1981, Starbucks made such an impression on Howard Schultz, a sales representative for the Swedish kitchenware and housewares brand, that he decided to launch a career at Starbucks.

Schultz's biggest idea came in 1983 at a housewares show in Milan, where he was impressed by the coffee shops and inspired to develop Starbucks. He envisioned a small regional operation becoming a national chain of coffee shops.

Baldwin and Bowker were not enthusiastic about the idea, so Schultz left Starbucks and started his own chain called Il Giornale, which became successful and expanded to several cities.

In 1987, Baldwin and Bowker decided to Starbucks sell and Schultz quickly took advantage of the situation and bought the company, combining all of its operations under the Starbucks brand.

The world's largest coffee chain

In four years, the network of coffee shops has grown from less than 20 to more than 100 outlets.

In 1996, it began opening storesoutside North America and Starbucks soon became the largest coffee chain in the world. By the end of the decade, Starbucks had approximately 2,500 locations in about 20 countries.

By 2007, the chain already boasted withmore than 15,000 locations worldwide and an ambitious strategy was put in place to ensure growth, which included the acquisition of a chain of bakeries and coffee accessory manufacturers.

In 2019, the largest Starbucks roastery in the world, the Starbucks Reserve Roastery, opened in Chicago. By 2021, Starbucks was present in dozens of countries around the world and operated more than 32,000 stores.

Currently, there are Starbucks stores all over the world. Source: wikipedia.org

Starbucks and the future

During this time, however, Starbucks also faced various challenges, including the COVID-19 pandemic, which negatively impacted sales, especially in China, one of the company's key markets.

In 2022, Schultz is still CEO, but Starbucks recently announced that it has hired Laxman Narasimhan to replace Schultz in 2023.

Starbucks' role in the coffee industry

Starbucks, along with several smaller companies, has helped to create America's coffee culture. Before that, not just every American drank cheap, low-quality black coffee from coffee pots at home.

Starbucks popularized espresso, got people excited about coffee from different countries and introduced a whole new field of beverages. It can be said to havepioneered coffee culture, opened the way to more expensive and higher quality coffees, and paved the way for the modern specialty coffee industry.