CEO Anssi Thureson says salary increases will boost productivity and improve customer service as the largest coffee chain in the Nordics seeks to retain staff and build a more sustainable business
Anssi Thureson, CEO, Espresso House | Photo credit: Espresso House
Swedish coffee chain Espresso House has announced it will invest SEK 81m ($8m) in 2023 to boost staff wages across the business.
The Lund-based company operates almost 500 stores across Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark and Germany, employing 7,000 staff, including around 6,000 store workers.
Anssi Thureson, who was appointed CEO of Espresso House in May 2022, spent his first 100 days as CEO traveling and meeting with employees. He said the wage boost is in response to the challenges employees are currently facing and to strengthen the connection he views between satisfied staff and a long-term, sustainable business.
Although the fifth wealthiest EU state, Sweden has not escaped the cost of living crisis, with energy and food prices rising sharply over the last year.
In an interview with World Coffee Portal, Thureson said that ‘a strong people culture is the foundation of our brand’ and highlighted the importance of onboarding, training and good leadership.
He also highlighted the need to focus on simplifying operational tasks for employees.
Following ongoing investment in digital sales channels, delivery platforms and in-store coffee subscriptions, Espresso House will also launch a programme this year to reduce the complexity of its outlets.
Ongoing staff shortages in the hospitality industry have prompting major coffee chains to increase pay in an effort to increase retention, with Costa Coffee and Pret A Manger in the UK and Starbucks and Bluestone Lane in the US among operators to announce staff pay rises over the last 18 months.