MUMBAI, India - Starbucks will enter India within six months after inking a deal with Tata, AFP reports. The coffeehouse chain will finally join other U.S. foodservice chains like Domino€™s, McDonald€™s and Pizza Hut in that country.
While traditionally tea-drinkers, Indians are embracing coffee and upscale, Western-style cafes. However, foreign companies setting up shop in India can be tricky because of smaller retailers€™ fear of losing business. Currently in India, plain coffee is priced at around 22 cents in small restaurants, while flavored coffees cost between $1.10 and $1.60 in Western-style cafes.
"India is one of the most dynamic markets, with tremendous potential," said Howard Schultz, Starbucks Coffee chairman and CEO, in a statement. "India can be an important source for coffee in the domestic market and across many regions globally, where Starbucks has operations."
Tata Coffee supplies coffee beans in southern India and Starbucks will source its beans from Tata Coffee before roasting them locally. The two companies will work together with local agronomists, farmers and technicians to promote better coffee-growing and milling skills.