Starbucks closing up to 200 locations across Canada over two years

Jun 10 2020, 7:51 am

Starbucks will be closing up to 200 locations across Canada over the course of two years, the company has announced to stakeholders.

The move is part of an overall “restructure” of the brand’s business in Canada, and some of the stores that close will be repositioned to store formats such as drive-thru, curbside delivery and pick up.

Typically, each year, Starbucks closes about 100 locations in the Americas.

The restructuring of the company’s Canadian market is in addition to “US store repositioning,” that “will include the closure of up to 400 company-operated stores over the next 18 months in conjunction with the opening, over time, of a greater number of new, repositioned stores in different locations and with innovative store formats.”

Starbucks describes its repositioning alongside the term “retrofitting,” saying that the move is part of an ongoing assessment of the company’s physical store footprint.

The document says for the past two years, the company has been undergoing a process of evolution through targeted store renovations, relocations and new stores.

A new store format, “Starbucks Pickup,” is part of this change — the innovation is tailored to customers who prefer to order ahead and pay through the Starbucks mobile app for pick-up, or to order delivery through Uber Eats.

Last year, the company says, plans were developed to introduce these types of stores to densely-populated, urban markets. The first Canadian location of this kind opened in Toronto in February.

Starbucks tells Daily Hive that the company is intensifying efforts to address increasing demand for convenience.

“We have a clear vision for our “Bridge to the Future,” and we are accelerating our plans to transform our store portfolio, elevate the customer experience for this new era, and drive long-term growth,” a spokesperson said.

“This strategy aligns closely with rapidly evolving customer preferences, including higher levels of mobile ordering, more contactless pick-up experiences and reduced in-store congestion, all of which naturally allow for greater physical distancing.”

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