Starbucks restructures in response to slowing sales

Coffee chain to licence out 83 company-owned stores in Europe

Starbucks also plans to close offices in Amsterdam. Photograph: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson

Starbucks also plans to close offices in Amsterdam. Photograph: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson

 

Coffee chain Starbucks is restructuring its European operations after several years of slowing sales and will close its Amsterdam office to the benefit of London.

The Seattle-based group is selling 83 company-owned stores in France, the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg to its longtime partner, Alsea. Alsea will also take over operations at 177 other Starbucks locations in those countries which are owned by franchisees.

Mexico City-based Alsea already operates more than 900 Starbucks stores in Mexico and South America.

Starbucks said the move to license out would help it “unlock untapped potential” for growth,

The deal is similar to one Starbucks made in 2016, when it sold off its stores in Germany.

Starbucks also plans to close offices in Amsterdam and consolidate its European headquarters in London. The closure will impact 186 employees, who will be encouraged to apply for jobs in London.

Starbucks will retain a roasting plant in the Netherlands which employs 80 people. –PA