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Starbucks introduces new geographic leadership structure

Senior executive Michael Conway will assume the newly created North America CEO role on 1 April 2024, with Chief Marketing Officer Brady Brewer appointed Starbucks International CEO

Michael Conway speaking at the biennial Starbucks Investor Day conference | Photo credit: Joshua Trujillo | Starbucks


Starbucks will introduce new North America and International CEO roles from next month in a bid to create a clearer geographic leadership structure ‘and drive impact on a global scale’ across its operations. 

Effective 1 April 2024, Michael Conway will move from his current position as President, International and Channel Development to the newly created North America CEO role. 

In a press release, Starbucks highlighted Conway’s vast experience in strategic planning, operational excellence and developing the Starbucks brand around the world as key to his appointment. 

The coffee chain, which currently operates approximately 18,000 stores across the US and Canada, said Sara Trilling will remain North America President, reporting to Conway. 

In a second leadership reshuffle, Chief Marketing Officer Brady Brewer will assume the role of Starbucks International CEO with responsibility for company-operated and licensed operations across Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), Japan and Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).  

Starbucks China co-CEOs Belinda Wong and Molly Liu will continue in their roles. 

Starbucks currently operates more than 20,650 outlets across 84 markets outside of North America and plans for 75% of new stores to be opened outside the US as it seeks to reach 55,000 stores globally by 2030

“To further accelerate progress, consistent with our ambitions, we are realigning the organisation to balance clear geographical focus with investing in functional capabilities to scale around the world, generating productivity and reinvigorating our partner culture,” said Laxman Narasimhan, CEO, Starbucks. 

Starbucks will not immediately replace Brewer as Chief Marketing Officer. Instead, both Conway and Brewer will receive regional marketing support while Lyne Castonguay will join the business in the newly created position of Chief Merchant and Product Officer.  

Castonguay currently serves as President of consulting, advisory and investment firm Victrice. She will oversee a newly created global function at Starbucks focused on global product strategy, developing new products and growth platforms, as well as leading Starbucks’ Global Channel Development and Siren Retail departments.   

Seattle-based Starbucks also intends to appoint a Global Brand Creative Leader later this year. 

In November 2023, Starbucks posted record fourth quarter sales to achieve $36bn full-year revenues. Despite first quarter sales rising 8% year-on-year to $9.4bn, Starbucks posted a 10% quarter-on-quarter fall in international sales amid escalating geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and lower consumer spend in China

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