This brand belongs to the world’s largest network of coffee houses. Howard Schultz’s establishments have become for many Americans a kind of buffer zone between home and work. Over the past couple of decades, the Starbucks coffee chain has become a kind of American symbol, not inferior to the popularity of McDonald’s.
In addition, the company began a bold foreign expansion. True, it was not all as smooth as in his native America. For example, in Austria it was possible to open only a few establishments, after which it became clear about the futility of American coffee houses in this country. And the history of the brand began in 1971 in Seattle.
Founded by Starbucks, three fans of coffee drink, people of creative professions. Zev Zigal taught history, Jerry Baldwin – English, and Gordon Bowker was a writer. Fans of coffee opened their establishment for the same, like them, lovers of a fragrant drink. It opened in 1971 in Seattle on the Pike Place Market. There was a small shop selling coffee beans and equipment for making the drink itself.
The first year of work as the main supplier in Starbucks was Alfred Pete, a good acquaintance to the founders. Only now it soon became clear that such cooperation was not particularly profitable. That’s why the company’s leaders decided to go directly to the coffee suppliers, so as to minimize their costs.
The same name of the company came from the name of one of the heroes of Melville’s novel Moby Dick. In our translation, his name was Starbeck. The first logo of the company depicted a siren with bare chest. This was a brown emblem, under the color of the drink. The siren symbolized the fact that coffee is brought to the institution from exotic distant countries.
That logo was quite controversial, many embarrassed naked woman’s breasts. Over time, this part of the body was covered with hair, and the logo was also cut off. Also, the color changed to green, although they talk about a return to historical shade. And the original logo of the institution was preserved only in one place – the very first Starbucks coffee house in Seattle.
Like the history of McDonald’s, success came to the company not because of its founders, but from the outside. He eventually became the owner of the company. And came to Starbucks Howard Schultz in 1982. This person needed a founder for business development, because people of creative professions simply did not know how to deal with the problems that flooded them. It is interesting that the founders did not particularly want to develop and in 1982 coffeehouses worked only in Seattle.
The situation was changed radically by Howard Schulz, who visited Milan. There he closely watched the work of the Italian coffee houses. However, the founders were skeptical about the idea of selling ready-made coffee in cups. According to the owners with this approach, the institution will lose all its essence, zest. Traditionally, the founders believed that coffee should be cooked at home.
But Schultz was so sure of his idea that he left Starbucks and founded his own coffee house, iI Gionale. It opened in 1985. The establishment was so successful that in a couple of years Schultz was able to buy Starbucks from the founders for $ 4 million, renaming his offspring. It’s interesting that Bill Gates himself was the adviser for Howard in this strategy. The founders of Microsoft was one of the first Starbucks investors. Three fans of coffee from Seattle left their business for a generous reward, and an active Schultz was able to do everything that he planned.
Immediately opened the first institution outside the boundaries of Seattle. Coffeehouses soon appeared in Vancouver, Chicago and British Columbia. When in 7 years Sturbucks enters the securities market, it will have 165 stores already. Three years later, the first institution outside the country appeared in Tokyo. It is interesting that only about 30% of all coffee houses belong to the company itself, the rest cooperate under a franchise agreement.So who was Howard Schulz, who managed to raise an ordinary company so high?
He was born into a poor family. However, Schulz did not grow up in poverty – his parents worked hard, but there were no excesses around. At the very beginning of cooperation with Sturbucks, the businessman dreamed that his coffeehouses would work in all the states of the country, literally on every corner. Schulz understood that it is not enough just to sell high-quality coffee, it is also necessary to create a special atmosphere in the institution.
He dreamed that this was the place where a person would stop on the way from work to home and back. And Schultz managed to realize his dream. At the same time, most of his colleagues note the ability of a businessman to react quickly to the prevailing circumstances. Schultz always follows what trends prevail, he tries to understand in advance what will be needed tomorrow to his buyer.
One of the main merits of the new owner, which greatly contributed to the company’s success, was the introduction of standardization in it. Today in any coffee house there is the same assortment of basic goods. As a result, in whatever country the Sturbucks fan is not, he can always be sure that he can find his favorite sort of coffee here. Naturally, Sturbucks also offers special products, taking into account local features. The same tactics are followed and McDonald’s.
Today in the assortment of Starbucks coffee houses hot chocolate, espresso, different syrups, frappuchino, seasonal kinds of tea and coffee. You can order a hot beverage and a sandwich or cake. But Starbucks is different from competitors, that here the emphasis is on coffee. It is for him that people come here, and not just a snack, passing by. In Starbucks there was a real cult of coffee consumption.
Someone likes the very atmosphere of the institution, and someone buys a glass of hot, life-giving drink and drinks it on the way to work. Plastic packaging allows you to do this with convenience. The same atmosphere in the coffee shops became part of Schulz’s standardization. Although in all institutions the basic elements are similar to each other, but still each coffee house has something of its own unique, some peculiarity. And this is the important merit of Howard Schulz and the team of his designers.
For the past decades, Starbucks has been active in international markets, buying up small local coffee-shop chains and incorporating them into its brand. The company expanded so quickly that even in its animated series The Simpsons joked about the start of the country’s capture by Starbucks. But there is a limit to everything, Howard Schultz even said that in order to optimize the company is going to close 600 coffee houses in America. And the reason for Starbucks’ problems is the same economic crisis.
It is worth considering who the coffee in the institution is still not cheap. And internal problems showed themselves inappropriately. Howard Schulz even said that he intends to return to direct management, in order to again rake up the heap of problems that Starbucks overgrew. There is no doubt that he will succeed, because the brand is one of the Americans’ favorite, and nobody wants to lose such trust.
It is said that Starbucks has become a real pilgrimage site. Here, different people drink coffee, representing all kinds of estates. Businessmen intercept the express on the move, and lovers stretch the pleasure at the tables, not the best, by the way, the best. Coffeehouses Starbucks – a favorite place for freelancers, here write their posts bloggers, and podcasters are engaged in editing sound files. Here people with gadgets and laptops are stretching, because coffee houses provide access to the Internet via Wi-Fi. It’s true, is it convenient to reread the mail for a mug of coffee?
Music is also constantly played in the cafe. And there is a special server that allows you to simultaneously play the same songs throughout the network of institutions. A visitor in New York hears the same thing as a client in Seattle. It is interesting that Howard Schultz even was able on this basis to conclude an agreement with such a giant of American business as Apple.Now every client of a coffee house with an iPhone, iPad or iPod can immediately in Starbucks acquire a playable melody through the iTunes Store.
Interestingly, recently a lot of third-party products began to be sold at Starbucks establishments. The management somehow decided that institutions can become something more than just a coffee house. But this experience was unsuccessful, not so long ago the company refused to sell CDs. Each coffee shop on average each day sold only one unit of such goods. Naturally, Apple is only happy with this outcome.
Young people often work in large catering networks. But if in McDonald’s this experience can not be called pleasant, then in Starbucks to be an employee even prestigious. Who would not want to become a barista? And let this work is difficult and takes a lot of effort, but it makes it possible to feel the whole atmosphere of the network of legendary coffee houses.
In March 2008, Starbucks launched an interesting Internet project, a website of ideas. Any person, whether the client is a coffee shop or not, can advise the owners how to improve their establishments. The organizers promise that they will consider all the ideas, but they will implement the best. Even the visitors of the site can vote for this or that idea, thus promoting the best.
Currently, the position of Starbucks is clearly not the best. But the company makes every effort to overcome the crisis, which instantly does not work. Today, the company’s turnover began to grow again, amounting to 13 billion dollars, while the company employs 149,000 people. And 20 thousand Starbucks establishments operate in 60 countries of the world.