Marinopoulos is the name of the group that will bring Starbucks to Bucharest. Investors realize that the market has been growing steadily for some years now, so big international players watch the market.
Starbucks, founded 30 years ago in the US, only to bring in 2004 $5.3Billion net revenue from its coffee-shops in 34 states, either by sole proprietorship, association or franchise.
For 2006 it plans to open 1800 new locations, 300 more than those planned for 2005, one of them possibly being in Bucharest, Romania.
Marinopoulos Coffee Company developed a network of 50 coffee shops in Greece plus those opened in Switzerland, Austria, and Cyprus. They have been planning on conquering the Balkans for quite some time, and after successfully bringing Sephora, Beauty Shop, and Marks&Spencer, Starbucks comes like a natural move.
Coffee-shop owners do not consider Starbucks a threat.
Madalina Dorobantu, owner of Fashion Bar and Studio Café:
"Starbucks is a wonderful concept, but in Romania it would only target a small percent of the market."
First, Starbucks is not smoker-friendly.
Second, they rely on the "take-away" strategy, but people affording to come to Starbucks on a regular basis have free coffee at work.
The clash is imminent:
Gloria Jean's Coffees' Main Franchiser wants 20 new locations, 5 until late October.
Coffeeheaven International, network of coffee shops in Central Europe, moves in this very year.
Fashion-Bar and Studio-Café owner plans other locations until 2007.
Turabo, Nescafe, Nova Brasilia. All coffee shops that plan on opening new locations this year.
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