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Tatas may bring Starbucks to India

Last updated on: October 10, 2011 16:18 IST

Tatas may bring Starbucks to India

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US-based coffee retail giant Starbucks said on Monday it expects to announce a roadmap for its entry into India soon, as talks with Tata Coffee for a potential alliance are moving forward.

"We are moving forward with memorandum of undesrtanding (signed with Tata Coffee earlier this year) discussions and planning and hope to make an announcement soon," Starbucks Coffee International president John Culver told PTI.

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The company had earlier signed a memorandum of understanding with Tata Coffee for formation of a strategic alliance for sourcing of coffee beans.

 As per the MoU signed, the companies also agreed to explore the opportunities for opening coffee shops in India.

Following media reports that the American coffee chain is close to setting up a joint venture with Tata Coffee for opening coffee shops in India, shares of the Tata Group firm

were trading at Rs 900 apiece, up by 12.09 per cent from their previous close.

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Image: Howard Schultz, chairman and CEO, Starbucks.

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"We are excited about the great opportunities that India presents to Starbucks and look forward to offering high-quality coffee, handcrafted beverages, legendary service

and the unique Starbucks Experience to customers in India," Culver said.

Separately, Tata Coffee said in a regulatory filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange that "appropriate disclosure shall be made as and when there is any further specific price-sensitive information on this matter."

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The company said it has nothing new to report regarding its MoU with Starbucks beyond the disclosures made in January.      

Starbucks is the world's biggest coffee chain, managing over 16,000 stores, and operates in more than 50 countries.

It has been linked to several Indian firms such as Jubilant Foodworks with respect to a prospective partnership for commencing retail operations in the country.

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Under the MoU, the two companies had said they would look at sourcing and roasting of high-quality green coffee beans in Tata Coffee's Coorg (India) facility.

In addition, the two companies will also collaborate on the promotion of responsible agronomy practices, including training for local farmers, technicians and agronomists, to improve their coffee-growing and milling skills.

"We welcome Starbucks' entry into India because of both its unique experience with the store format and for its commitment to society values that we share," Tata Coffee chairman R K Krishnakumar had earlier said.

 



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