SEATTLE & SEOUL, South Korea--Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq:SBUX) and Dong Suh Foods Company today launched the latest ready-to-drink (RTD) coffee beverage in South Korea. Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink is a fresh, ready-to-drink chilled cup coffee featuring the high-quality coffee customers expect from Starbucks.
The Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink will initially be offered in two flavors, Seattle Latte and Milano Espresso, and are available today in the refrigerated cases of convenience stores, supermarkets and hypermarkets. Starbucks Discoveries® will be available nationwide beginning tomorrow.
The launch of Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink represents Starbucks first entry into the fresh chilled cup coffee segment of the ready-to-drink category in South Korea. Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink is made fresh and is kept refrigerated, with a short, 14-day shelf life, one of the shortest on the market today. This superpremium product was developed specifically for the South Korean market and consumer taste preferences using coffee of the same high-quality as is found in all Starbucks retail stores and coffee-based products worldwide.
"When I think back to the opening of the first Starbucks stores in Korea in 1999, I realized how fortunate we are to have been welcomed and embraced by customers in South Korea who are interested in discovering the unique Starbucks Experience," said Jim Donald, president and ceo ? Starbucks. "With the introduction of Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink, we are making it easier for our customers to discover something new from Starbucks."
The name "Starbucks Discoveries®" was inspired by Starbucks coffee buyers who travel the world looking for the highest quality arabica coffee available. Starbucks Discoveries® Seattle Latte is named after the birthplace of Starbucks; Starbucks Discoveries® Milano Espresso is named for the Italian city, honoring the development of the first espresso maker and also an important part of the inspiration for Starbucks coffeehouses.
Starbucks has a proven track record of creating successful coffee-related products. In 2005, Starbucks and Dong Suh Foods formed a relationship to offer Korean coffee lovers superpremium coffee RTD products. It started with Starbucks bottled Frappuccino® coffee drinks and in November 2006, Starbucks DoubleShot® espresso drink was introduced to consumers in South Korea.
To date, these Starbucks® coffee innovations remain favorite selections for coffee lovers in South Korea who are looking for great coffee on the go. Together, these three Starbucks® RTD drinks create even more opportunities for consumers who are looking for an authentic coffee experience.
Dong Suh Food Corporation's president and ceo, Lee Chang-hwan, also commented, "I am pleased to be able to present the new superpremium Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink with the world's best coffee brand, Starbucks. As a leader in the coffee market, we will put all our efforts to further develop more coffee products to meet the needs and expectations of Korean customers through our relationship with Starbucks."
"Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink allows us to bring the Starbucks Experience to our customers wherever they are. Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink is a high-quality coffee beverage, crafted with care and attention to detail that our customers have come to expect from us," said Jamie Ledford, managing director ? North Asia, Starbucks Global Consumer Products. "Expanding into this new channel in South Korea helps to strengthen the Starbucks brand and reinforces our reputation for innovation, coffee quality and expertise."
As announced earlier in October 2005, Starbucks entered into an agreement in South Korea with Dong Suh Foods Corporation, the leading manufacturer and distributor of instant and packaged coffee in the country since 1968, for local development, marketing, sales and distribution of Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drink. Dong Suh Foods works with Seoul Dairy Cooperative to supply high-quality milk products, as well as to manufacture and distribute the Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drinks sold in hypermarkets.
Seoul Dairy Cooperative's union president Cho Heung-won said, "I am very glad to have Seoul Dairy Cooperative working with Dong Suh Foods Corporation on the Starbucks Discoveries® coffee drinks. We will put efforts to meet the customers' expectations with excellent products and build brand value."