“Since we opened our first store in Puerto Rico nine years ago, we have seen tremendous growth opportunities in Latin America – even some of our biggest markets are just getting started,” says Cliff Burrows, president, Americas, Starbucks Coffee Company.
“Today’s milestone demonstrates our continued commitment and enthusiasm for the region and the optimism for the opportunities ahead.”
The region’s 500th store, located on Huerfanos, the busiest pedestrian street in downtown Santiago, showcases Starbucks new store design concept, which aims to create an authentic, yet locally-relevant Starbucks Experience.
It features the seamless fusion of local and global design elements, integrating Starbucks coffee heritage and expertise with that of Latin America’s distinctive cultural heritage.
This balance of Starbucks heritage and local relevance is paramount to Starbucks mission to further elevate Starbucks third place experience for its customers in the 10 Latin American markets the company currently serves.
“As we continue to accelerate our growth momentum in 2012, we also recognize that the best success is shared success. Our more than 8,000 partners (employees) across the region are at the heart and soul of the Starbucks Experience we deliver to our customers every day,” says Pablo Arizmendi, Vice President and General Manager, Latin America, Starbucks Coffee Company.
Starbucks international business is a key future growth engine for the company. The Latin America region continues to present great opportunities for Starbucks to accelerate thoughtful growth while continuing to deliver an unparalleled customer experience.
“We see strong growth potential in Brazil, where we have plans to open several hundred stores in the next five years,” Arizmendi adds.
Additionally, in October, Starbucks strengthened its relationship with Alsea, its joint venture partner in Argentina, Chile, and Mexico.
The companies plan to open more than 300 new stores in Argentina and Mexico within the next five years. Today Starbucks employs about 8,050 partners in Latin America and will continue to add new jobs in the next five years as it grows.
Starbucks operates stores in Argentina, Aruba, The Bahamas, Brazil, Chile, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, and Puerto Rico.
In addition to Latin America, Starbucks continues to grow its business around the world. On October 25th, Starbucks opened its 500th store in Mainland China and plans to open its first store in India in 2012.