Starbucks Corporation announced today that it will enter the
ready-to-drink coffee category in Japan and Taiwan. The combined
ready-to-drink market in these countries represents more than U.S. $10
billion in total annual consumer sales. In March, agreements were signed
with Starbucks local business partners and major distributors in both
countries to manufacture and distribute a Starbucks-branded premium
ready-to-drink coffee. Starbucks plans to enter the category in the
chilled segment.

In Japan, Starbucks has entered into an agreement with Suntory Ltd.,
one of the leading Japanese producers and distributors of food and
beverages, for the manufacture and distribution of coffee ready-to-drink
products in Japan. Starbucks Coffee Japan, Ltd., which has operated
Starbucks stores in Japan since 1996, will provide ongoing consulting
support including local brand and marketing expertise for the Japanese
market. This support complements Starbucks coffee expertise and experience
in the ready-to-drink coffee category in the United States and Canada.

In Taiwan, Starbucks has entered into a distribution agreement with
President Starbucks Coffee Taiwan Limited, the Company’s joint venture
partner in Taiwan, for marketing and distribution of the new product. The
product for Taiwan will be manufactured by Uni-President Enterprises
Corporation, one of the largest food and beverage companies in the

“Extending the Starbucks brand into new distribution channels is part
of our long-term growth plans,” says Gerry Lopez, president, Starbucks
global consumer products. “The success we have had bringing bottled
Starbucks Frappuccino coffee drink and Starbucks DoubleShot espresso drink
to consumers in channels outside of our retail stores in the United States
and Canada demonstrates our potential worldwide. Our decision to take this
first step to expand into the consumer products channel in Asia is a
result of strong worldwide acceptance of the Starbucks brand as part of
people’s daily lives.”

News, Starbucks