Starbucks opens largest store in the world

Starbucks has large scale in China, "and now it's getting a toe in the water to say 'We can take it to the next level, we can move into being a more experience-based brand, '" says Andrew Kuiler, CEO of The Silk Initiative, a China food-and-beverage strategic brand consultancy. Customers at this attractive outlet settled on the West Nanjing Road shopping strip, now can watch beans being roasted, sample high-end brews and use a Starbucks augmented-reality digital app to interact with the store.

The firm held a 54.8 percent share of China's 25.2 billion yuan ($3.81 billion) specialist coffee shop market previous year, far ahead of rivals like McDonald's Corp's McCafe and Whitbread Plc's Costa Coffee, Euromonitor data show.

Starbucks opened a new super-sized Roastery in Shanghai on Tuesday.

Starbucks announced it would expand its investment in China in July 2017 by sealing its biggest deal: the company planned to acquire the remaining 50% of its East China joint venture in a $1.3 billion transaction.

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Starbucks has more than 600 coffee shops in Shanghai, more than any other city in the world.

Starbucks' new Shanghai store is 30,000 square feet.

But the Shanghai roastery won't hold the title of largest Starbucks for too long.

Same-store sales at USA cafes were up 2% for the quarter ended 1 October, while sales in China were up 8%.

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"Having mobile ordering where you can either do a mobile order for pickup in the store or a mobile order to be delivered to you is the next frontier for us", he said.

Shares of Starbucks have risen 5.8 percent this year.

Ma said, for himself, "I don't like coffee, but I like Starbucks".

But despite all of Shanghai Roastery's features, it's still a coffee shop at heart. "Strengthening partner-driven and locally-relevant community engagement" are just some of the buzzwords floating around the new initiative, which will see the introduction of Yunnan Reserve coffee, grown in Pu'er, exclusively at the Shanghai Reserve Roastery. The concept is part of a broad push upmarket that includes a line of premium coffee called Reserve and cafes to showcase the new brand.

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  • Kelly Blake