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Starbucks retail outlets
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What's Brewing?

Customers are seeking opportunities to experiment with their coffee and want to make the switch to healthier beverages. Navin Gurnaney, chief executive officer, Tata Starbucks, shares how the company's newest offerings are meeting customers' needs

June 2019     |     276 words     |     1-minute read

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Starbucks entered the Indian market in October 2012. Currently it has 150 stores across India, serving nearly 270,000 customers each week. At the core of the Starbucks experience is the Third Place that refers to Starbucks as the other place outside of home and work, where people can relax or work and be comfortable. 

Navin Gurnaney, chief executive officer, Tata Starbucks, shares what trends are dominating the sector, and how Starbucks is responding to what consumers want.

Navin Gurnaney, chief executive officer, Tata Starbucks

What are the top consumer trends in your industry?

The Indian customers are very well-travelled, well-informed and appreciate a quality experience.

Experimentation: The market is evolving, and customers are open to experimentation when it comes to coffee. Customers have become more aware of the coffee palate and are keen on exploring coffee concoctions that elevate their senses like Nitro Brew. 

Sustainability: Consumers are also becoming more conscious of the environment and prefer sustainable choices. We have received a great response from our customers on our transition to bio-degradable solutions.

Wellness: It has made a separate market for itself where a great number of customers are switching to healthier alternatives. 

The egg white and chicken in multigrain croissant is a breakfast favourite. Photo credit: Tejal Pandey

The consumer trend of FY2019-20?

Health consciousness is the next big thing and we just launched the cold foam, a heathier way of having your coffee with the dairy of your choice. We also introduced almond milk as a dairy alternative across our stores in India.

How do you spot early trends? 

We listen to our customers continuously; we understand their changing behaviours and map the current need gaps, and then innovate to bridge the gaps.

Are the trends in your sector age- or gender-specific?

We listen to our customers continuously; we understand their changing behaviours and map the current need gaps, and then innovate to bridge the gaps. 

Starbucks' newest offering is Nitro Cold Brew, is a naturally sweet, nitrogen-infused coffee, which takes 48 hours to make

Why do you write customer names incorrectly?

We don’t intentionally misspell names. We serve millions of customers and, sometimes, names can be a bit tricky; but let me tell you wrongly written names are a great conversation starter.

—Harsha Ramachandra & Sarika Kapoor Chokshi


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