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Starbucks considering delivery-only stores in the US

Starbucks has indicated it will launch delivery-only sites in the US this year to meet growing demand for convenience formats as it seeks to ‘unlock’ capacity in its largest market

CFO Rachel Ruggeri said Starbucks is exploring new store designs to meet increasing consumer demand for convenience | Photo credit: Starbucks


Starbucks is considering launching delivery-only sites across the US to meet growing demand for convenience and make its stores portfolio more efficient. 

Speaking to investors at the TD Cowen Future of the Consumer Conference, Starbucks Chief Financial Officer Rachel Ruggeri said the coffee chain is exploring new store designs to meet increasing consumer demand for convenience, similar to the coffee chain’s pick-up only sites. 

“When we think about our opportunity in the future, it’s how do we leverage our portfolio to unlock capacity but also in a way that best meets the customer needs and demands. And so that’s going to be different versions of drive-thru stores. It’s going to be delivery-only stores, as well as different versions of pick-up stores. So, a lot of different, what I’d call, store designs and types to be able to meet the increasing demand that we see,” she said. 

Starbucks currently operates more than 9,300 company-operated stores across the US, 70% of which offer drive-thru and 1% of which are pick-up only sites. 

Ruggeri said delivery is becoming ‘a more meaningful part’ of Starbucks’ US business and launching delivery-only sites would ‘take the complexity out of existing stores’, where staff manually manage orders from in-store, drive-thru and delivery channels. 

World Coffee Portal research shows 29% of US consumers surveyed in 2022 had ordered a coffee shop beverage for delivery, rising to 45% for those aged under 35. 

Starbucks currently uses Uber Eats and DoorDash for delivery across the US and is reportedly set to partner with CloudKitchens, the dark kitchen company run by Uber founder Travis Kalanick.

According to Business Insider, Starbucks will open a pick-up only site for delivery in San Francisco in August 2023.   

Convenience channels now account for nearly three-quarters of Starbucks’ revenue across the US, with mobile ordering, drive-thru and delivery comprising 74% of US sales in the coffee chain’s second quarter of 2023.  

Starbucks posted 14% total net revenue growth to $8.7bn for the three months ended 2 April 2023. 

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