Starbucks' Success in China

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Feb 13, 2015 02:02
I don’t know when Starbucks started to successfully spread into a lot of cities in China, though when Starbucks entered China in 1999, many were skeptical that Starbucks had a chance. They can be seen not only in metropolises like Beijing and Shanghai, but in many smaller cities. They also managed to run their branches in different regions in those cities -- be it in big shopping malls, colleges or even historical places; for example, there is a Starbucks coffee shop in the Forbidden City; also, a chain shop operates in an ancient alleyway in the city where I live. They have always tried to maintain the vintage shop designs similar to their surroundings, in order to avoid the controversy about whether they have spoiled the local cultural landscapes.

In fact, Chinese don’t fancy coffee drinks as much as tea. I even saw lots of people, especially the middle-aged or older, go to a Starbucks shop and ask for a cup of tea. To be frank, the tea drinks in Starbucks don’t taste wonderful, because they are brewed by teabags. Starbucks always claims it is devoted to fostering the coffee culture in China; I do see there are some paintings and graffiti on the wall intended to publicize the coffee knowledge. And, it never forgets to mention in its brochures about the contribution to the environmental protection and its continuous efforts to promote coffee farmers’ welfare.