Starbucks opens 20,000th international store, celebrating 25 years of UK growth

Starbucks celebrates a significant international milestone, with the opening of its 20,000th store outside of North America, located in Oldham, Manchester as the company marks 25 years since opening its first store in the UK, on King’s Road, Chelsea, in London back in 1998.

Over the past 25 years, Starbucks has grown significantly across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and now operates over 4,000 stores across the region and has more than 1,100 stores in the first and largest market: the UK.

After successfully navigating the last few years and its unprecedented challenges, Starbucks has maintained strong, double-digit growth in the UK and continues to make good progress on its expansion plans to open 100 new stores in the UK, as well as 300 in EMEA, this financial year.

Alex Rayner, vice president and general manager at Starbucks UK, commented: “We are thrilled to welcome the Oldham community to our new store and our first in Oldham.

“Celebrating 25 years in the UK is a real privilege, and to mark this special anniversary we’ve just launched our first UK-exclusive beverage, Starbucks Clotted Cream Fudge Cold Brew, which is available now in all UK stores.

“We look forward to continuing building on our legacy of coffee craft innovation and our long-standing partnerships with organisations such as Hubbub and NHS Charities Together. Looking ahead, we are fully invested in the UK and giving back to the local communities we serve each day.”

The Oldham store features both a drive thru lane for customers on the go and seating. Starbucks customers in the UK have embraced this store format since Starbucks introduced the first drive thru coffee shop to the country in 2008, which today accounts for around 25 per cent of Starbucks stores nationwide to help meet customers’ needs, wherever they are.

Repurposed from a disused retail unit to reduce the carbon footprint of extensive renovations, the Oldham Drive Thru also is certified as a Greener Store, meeting 25 required standards, as verified by an outside auditor, across eight environmental impact areas such as energy efficiency, water stewardship and waste diversion.

Starbucks’ ‘ambitious’ plans for growth in the UK continue with many more stores planned to bring the Starbucks Experience to more communities across the UK, particularly in key cities and drive thru locations and with a focus on store format innovation such as smaller, digitally forward stores.

By Matthew Neville – Senior Correspondent, Bdaily

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