Starbucks Moves Full Steam Ahead in India

By 2028, Tata Starbucks Private Limited plans to more than double its current store count in the country, targeting slightly smaller cities.

Laxman Narasimhan Starbucks ceo together with India green apron partners
Starbucks CEO Laxman Narasimhan visited India this week, as expansion plans were announced. Courtesy of Starbucks.

Starbucks is taking a good look at India.

This week, Tata Starbucks Private Limited announced ambitions to reach 1,000 stores and 8,600 employed in India by 2028. The pace means a new store would open every three days, with Tier 2 and 3 Indian cities being a focus. Tier 2 cities, as defined by the Reserve Bank of India have population densities between 50,000- 99,999, while Tier 3 has between 20,000-49,999.

Through a 50:50 joint-venture between Starbucks Coffee Company and Tata Consumer Products Limited that launched in 2012, Tata Starbucks now operates in over 390 stores across 54 Indian cities, with approximately 4,300 employees.

Further, the brand says it will look to diversify store formats in India—expanding drive-thrus, airport locations and its 24-hour store footprint.

This year, Tata Starbucks expects to open a second Starbucks Reserve store (Fort Mumbai opened in 2022), and to launch a whole bean coffee from India in Starbucks Reserve stores in India and the U.S. alike.

“Over the past 11 years, the India market has grown to become one of Starbucks fastest-growing markets in the world,” says CEO Laxman Narasimhan. “With a growing middle class, we are proud to help cultivate the evolving coffee culture while honoring its rich heritage. With our trusted business partner, Tata, and our green apron partners, we are well-positioned to capture the limitless opportunities as we open one store every three days in India and further our aspiration to become truly global.”

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