10 Nov 20 Pandemic? Starbucks on a roll in SA
Starbucks in South Africa has pulled out the stops in an against-the-odds 2020 investment drive and is opening eight new stores in four weeks, from mid-November to mid-December – in Cape Town, Stellenbosch, Johannesburg and Pretoria.
The four-week store opening schedule begins on 19 November with Canal Walk, and includes other prime Cape Town locations at Cavendish Square, Stellenbosch, Tyger Valley Shopping Centre, the V&A Waterfront and Camps Bay; in Pretoria at Castle Gate Mall; and in Joburg in Rosebank.
Adrian Maizey, owner and CEO of Rand Capital Coffee, the new custodian of Starbucks in Southern Africa, says that as a born and bred South African, he’s excited about the major investment into the country, as well as the significant job creation during tough economic conditions, both through employment opportunities at the new stores, and new business for contractors and sub-contractors who are fitting and equipping the eight stores.
By the end of 2020, Starbucks will have employed an additional 69 full-time employees and promoted 21, who are globally referred to as partners in the group, to foster a sound sense of equality and shared vision. This brings the total complement of permanent employees to 300.
“Starbucks is an iconic global brand, and when the opportunity arose to expand it into my home country, particularly as this is one of few remaining scalable regions where Starbucks is yet to have a strong presence, I grabbed the chance,” he comments.
He adds that Starbucks operates on a licensing model as opposed to a franchise, “and it was an honour to be awarded the licence for South Africa as it seldom goes to an individual.”
Bucking pandemic trends
About bucking the prevailing trends in the pandemic-affected hospitality industry with major investing in 2020, Maizey says, “Taking all economic realities into account, in real terms the challenges and opportunities of running a business remain of the same nature – building sustainable relationships with our customers and our partners, doing it in an economically viable way.
“Our business models should always be built on solid foundations to withstand economic downturns, and at the same time, they must be flexible enough to identify and embrace change when needed.”
With the back-to-back store openings taking place and the company’s reach extending further into the South African market, Maizey says their challenge as newcomers to the increasingly discerning coffee market is to better inform the public about all that Starbucks has to offer.
“We have something for just about everyone – and by sharing the brand offering, ethos and culture, we know that this market will understand it, enjoy it and embrace it.”
Maizey notes that Rand Capital Coffee is a proudly South African company, from its ownership and employees, to the suppliers and property owners who are part of the extended value chain. “We’re committed to South Africa and we intend to be around for the long-term.”
Starbucks began in 1971 with a single store in Seattle. It now connects with millions of customers every day with more than 30,000 retail stores in 80 markets.