Starbucks to Close 150 Stores as Sales Slide
A coffee giant that recently closed for an entire day to engage its employees in mandatory “bias training” is closing 150 stores due to a slide in sales.
“Our growth has slowed a bit,” said Kevin Johnson, Starbucks CEO. “I expect better, I think our shareholders deserve better, and we’re committed to address that.”
But it is tough to sell coffee when your stores are closed. Starbucks faced a wave of public outrage after two men were arrested at a Philadelphia store after refusing to leave when asked by staff. The men had not purchased an item.
Johnson acknowledged that closing 8,000 stores for a full day did indeed hurt sales this quarter.
In a move that is sure to enrage shareholders, Starbucks is closing all of its company-owned stores on May 29 to teach it employees “racial bias training.”
On 5/29, we'll close US company-owned stores to conduct racial-bias training to address implicit bias & prevent discrimination. We're taking a hard look at who we are as a company. We’re ashamed & recognize that racial bias is a problem we must address. https://t.co/xIYc75BJPj
— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) April 17, 2018
“We’re taking a hard look at who we are as a company, said the company on Twitter. “We’re ashamed & recognize that racial bias is a problem we must address.”
BLP Passage Ends.
According to Bloomberg, the company plans to close stores in densely populated metro areas where competition is strong, while focusing on dominating the suburbs.
“The competitive environment has really become a lot stronger in the U.S. and a lot of that is the fast-food chains really improving the quality and breadth of their offerings in terms of hot beverages and breakfast,” said Bloomberg analyst Jennifer Bartashus.