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Starbucks India helping Tata Group internationally

Strengthening their partnership, Coffee retailer Starbucks India is helping lift international exposure for India’s Tata Group brands.

Starbucks is introducing Tata’s single-origin coffee in the US and its mineral water in Singapore, and helping develop a signature Indian tea blend. In return, Tata group is introducing Starbucks coffee on Vistara flights and launching its specialty tea brand Teavana in India.

Starbucks will sell single-origin, premium coffee from India at its Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room in Seattle, says chairman/CEO Howard Schultz said after meeting Tata chairman Cyrus Mistry at the iconic store. Starbucks will be opening a similar outlet in Shanghai next year.

Tata-Starbucks will also introduce Kenyan and Sumatran coffees at Starbucks stores across India, says the company, and Starbucks coffee will be available on Vistara, a full-service airline, later this year. Vistara is a joint venture between Tata Sons and Singapore Airlines, and has more than 457 flights weekly to 17 destinations.

Following the success of the tea category in its US stores, Starbucks will extend its Teavana specialty tea brand to India in December. The joint venture is also collaborating on the development of a signature Indian tea blend for Starbucks stores in India.

India has become Starbucks’ fastest-growing market since the first cafe opened in 2012 in a partnership with Tata Global Beverages. The chain has expanded to 84 locations across six cities.

The company’s China and Asia-Pacific unit generates about 13 per cent of its total revenue, and Starbucks plans to open about 900 outlets in the region this fiscal year, compared with 700 store additions in the Americas and 200 in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. It has more than 2000 cafes in China alone and plans about 500 new stores a year in the country.

Starbucks also plans to expand the availability of Himalayan Mineral Water, bottled by Tata Global Beverages, beyond Starbucks stores in India to Singapore this year. It is also exploring opportunities to introduce the brand to stores across Starbucks China and Asia-Pacific region.

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