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Starbucks Opening in France Draws Cronut-Like Lines

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Why are the French so crazy for American coffee?

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The city of Strasbourg, France got its first Starbucks last Friday, and the American coffee goliath's arrival was met with open arms. The Street reports that the store's Friday morning debut drew a line of hundreds of people, with customers waiting as long as three hours to be served.

While France, particularly Paris, is famous for its cafe culture, said cafes are also notorious for serving really bad coffee. Based on photos posted to Twitter, it seems many of Starbucks' French patrons are enthusiastically shelling out their Euros for whipped cream-topped Frappuccinos and sugary pastries.

While Starbucks is currently making a major push into Asia — particularly China, where it already has nearly 2,000 stores with another 2,500 on the way — it's relatively under-represented in Europe. The Street points out that the company has "a mere 110 locations in France, 106 in Russia and 11 in Portugal." Its biggest European market is the UK, where it has 865 stores.

A recent announcement that Starbucks would expand to Italy in 2017 was met with a heavy dose of skepticism, with many wondering how would a nation famous for its own espresso culture would react to the arrival of a company famous for oversized soy lattes and sugary-sweet Frappuccinos. But Starbucks won't be attempting to emulate hundreds of years of Italian tradition, instead the company plans to serve its own unique brand of American-style coffee. If neighbor France's enthusiasm for the mermaid's arrival is any indication, Starbucks will likely be a major hit when it opens in Milan early next year.

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