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Starbucks brews India plan

The world’s largest coffee chain Starbucks is just a few months away from debuting in India.

The Seattle-based coffee chain together with its local franchisee Tata Global Beverages, are on the final stage of completing the first 10 locations in New Delhi and Mumbai. According to Starbucks China and Asia Pacific president John Culver, the first outlets are due to open by September.

However, Starbucks has so far been mum about its plans for India.

“While we cannot share specific plans, we are committed to investing in growing our presence in the market and will do so in a smart, thoughtful way that meets and exceeds the expectations of our customers,” Culver said.

The first outlets are said to be located in a mall in West Delhi, in The Capital building in Mumbai and in prominent malls in South Delhi.

Meanwhile, Starbucks is said to be just days away from opening in Vietnam, but store numbers and locations have yet to be revealed.

Meanwhile, other coffee chain operators in India are also gearing up to counteract Starbucks’ anticipated entry in the country. Bangalore-based Cafe Coffee Day plans to take its present store count of 1285 to 2000 by 2015. It targets locations such as malls, transport hubs, premium institutions, highstreet and highways.

Italian coffee chain operator Lavazza which operates Barista coffee chain in India is also set to double its 160 outlets in India.

While the coffee chain market is swiftly growing in India, Starbucks believes that the country still has huge room for more coffee houses. India’s organised coffee market is valued at US$140 million annually.


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