Howard Schultz is the Chairman, and Chief Global Strategist in Control of the Starbucks Company. In 1971, a small coffee shop which specialized in selling whole Arabica beans was opened in Seattle’s Pike Place Market by Gerald Baldwin, Gordon Bowker and Ziev Siegl. In 1982, Schultz joined the Starbucks marketing team and he was inspired by the Milan’s coffee culture to set up an espresso bar in the corner of its only downtown Seattle shop. At that time, he stated, “The idea was to create a chain of coffeehouses that would become America’s ‘third place’. At that time, most Americans had two places in their lives – home and work. But I believed that people needed another place, a place where they could go to relax and enjoy others, or just be by themselves. I envisioned a place that would be separate from home or work, a place that would mean different things to different people”. A few years later, Starbucks’ founder agreed to sell him company and he immediately began opening new stores. In 1992, the company had 140 stores in the Northwest and Chicago which was successfully competing against other small coffee chain. The same year, Schultz had raised $25 million in order to open more new stores across nation. By 2002, Starbucks had established as the dominant specialty-coffee brand in North America. Starbucks is even more impressive when the company spent almost null value in advertising the brand. Starbucks serves more than 20 million unique customers and operates in more than 5000 stores worldwide.
SWOT Analysis Strengths * Innovation service * Lowest employee turnover rate * Good financial strength and profitability * High visibility of store locations * Practice of eco-friendly environment (Starbucks concerns with the conservation of energy and water, and recycling) * Comfortable atmosphere and good customer service * Product and brand consistency * Excellent customer service * Strong brand image associated