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Starbucks Announces Plans to Take Over India

Starbucks continues its quest for global domination by signing a deal with tea company Tata Global Beverages to bring the coffee chain to India for the first time. Residents of Delhi and Mumbai should see stores sometime this year with other parts of India to follow. While Starbucks hasn't given an official number, a Tata rep said they "could easily have 3,000 stores in India." That is a lot of stores! But not as many stores as the current reigning Indian coffee house, Cafe Coffee Day, which currently has 1,200 locations and plans for 2,000 more. Get on it, Starbucks. Here's a press release:

Tata Global Beverages and Starbucks Form Joint Venture to Open Starbucks Cafes across India

Separate Coffee Sourcing and Roasting Agreement with Tata Coffee Ltd will accelerate the discovery of Indian arabica coffees in India and around the world

MUMBAI, India, Jan 30, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Tata Global Beverages Limited and Starbucks Coffee Company SBUX +0.12% today announced a joint venture between the iconic international coffee brand and the 2nd largest branded tea company in the world. The 50/50 joint venture, named TATA Starbucks Limited, will own and operate Starbucks cafes which will be branded as Starbucks Coffee "A Tata Alliance."

The retail stores will be developed in cities across the country, beginning with stores in Delhi and Mumbai in calendar 2012.

In a separate sourcing and roasting agreement between Starbucks Coffee Company and Tata Coffee Limited, Tata Coffee Limited will roast coffee to supply TATA Starbucks Limited, and to export to Starbucks Coffee Company. This agreement paves the way for consumers in India to enjoy the premium Starbucks Experience, while further discovering the unique taste of high-quality Indian arabica coffee worldwide. TATA Starbucks Limited brings together two companies with a rich heritage in and passion for coffee, tea and innovative beverages. Together, the JV will enable an expanded range of beverage offerings for Indian consumers. As an example, the companies have agreed to jointly leverage assets and innovation to offer a premium tea product branded Tata Tazo.

"The joint venture with Starbucks is in line with Tata Global Beverages' strategy of growing through strategic alliances in addition to organic and inorganic growth," stated Mr. R K Krishnakumar, Vice Chairman, Tata Global Beverages. "It opens up exciting business opportunities and new formats for Tata Global Beverages. Starbucks brings unique retail expertise as well as a shared sense of business values. We are excited about the opportunities the alliance presents to innovate in the retail space and bring new beverage experiences to more consumers in India, leveraging the global in-home expertise of Tata Global Beverages and the global out-of-home expertise of Starbucks."

"We're very pleased to have found the best partner for Starbucks in Tata -- a company that shares so many of the same values for conducting business in a way that earns the trust and respect of our customers and partners (employees)," said John Culver, president, Starbucks China and Asia Pacific. "We look forward to bringing the Starbucks Experience to customers in India by offering high quality arabica coffee, handcrafted beverages, locally relevant food, and legendary service."

The TATA Starbucks Limited joint venture will operate cafes under the Quick Service Restaurant category. This partnership will enable the introduction of the unique Starbucks Experience to Indian consumers. Through a separate coffee sourcing and roasting agreement, Starbucks and Tata Coffee Limited will work toward developing and improving the profile of Indian-grown arabica coffees around the world by elevating the stature of Indian coffee through joint marketing efforts, as well as improving the quality of coffee through sustainable practices and advanced agronomy solutions.

Starbucks and Tata share common values of responsible business ethics and a commitment to community. Tata Coffee Limited has been working to improve the lives of coffee growing communities in the State of Karnataka. Through an initial financial commitment, Starbucks will work with Tata to support 'Swastha,' a school for children with special needs (in partnership with the Coorg Foundation) and aim to increase its capacity and outreach into the rural communities in the coffee growing region of Karnataka. Tata Coffee Limited and Starbucks also plan to work together on initiatives including the promotion of responsible agronomy practices and the provision of training for local farmers, technicians and agronomists to improve their coffee-growing and milling skills, along with exploring community projects which could positively impact the communities in the coffee growing regions where Tata is active.

· Starbucks to Open Starbucks Cafes Across India [Press Release]
· Starbucks to Open First Indian Store This Autumn [NYT]
· All Starbucks Coverage on Eater [-E-]

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