Starbucks Coffee International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq: SBUX), and Grupo VIPS, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sigla S.A., a leading food service and retail operator in Spain, through the joint-venture company, Starbucks Coffee Portugal, Lda, will celebrate the opening of its first coffeehouse in Portugal on Tuesday, September 30, 2008 at Alegro Mall in Alfragide.
"We are humbled and proud to introduce Starbucks Coffee and the unique Starbucks Experience to customers across the Iberian Peninsula with the opening of our first store in Portugal, a country filled with tradition and a rich coffee culture," said Alvaro Salafranca, general director of Starbucks Coffee Spain and Starbucks Coffee Portugal. "We are delighted that we will become a part of this great tradition and a part of the community."
The Starbucks Experience is distinctive in that it provides partners (employees) and customers with daily inspiration through human connections, innovative products and services, and a comfortable atmosphere.
"We are thrilled that we will be able to share our passion for high-quality arabica coffee and the Starbucks Experience with the people of Portugal," said Luis Mello, operation director of Starbucks Coffee Portugal. "Additionally, we are excited to offer some traditional Portuguese favorite food items in innovative ways that are complementary to our high-quality coffees."
Inspired by the culinary heritage of Portugal, Starbucks has been working closely with small specialty Portuguese food companies to develop food items that use local ingredients and are exclusive to this market. These traditional offerings include Pastel de Nata, a small custard tart; and Pastel de Feijao, pastries made with almonds and sweet beans.
"Being respectful of the surrounding environment and relevant within the community where we do business is important to us," said Martin Coles, president of Starbucks Coffee International. "It is essential that we enter Portugal with a strong and trusted partner that shares our values and passion for people, quality and service, attributes that Grupo VIPS clearly has," continued Coles.
Extending successful partnerships into new territories is part of Starbucks international growth strategy. Grupo VIPS has been a Starbucks business partner for more than six years, and through joint-venture companies, has led the daily operations of approximately 75 Starbucks retail stores in Spain, and 45 in France.
Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting the highest quality arabica coffee in the world. Today, with stores around the globe, the company is the premier roaster and retailer of specialty coffee in the world. Through our unwavering commitment to excellence and our guiding principles, we bring the unique Starbucks Experience to life for every customer through every cup. To share in the experience, please visit us in our stores or online at www.starbucks.com.
About Grupo VIPS
Grupo VIPS is the Spanish market leader in full service dining. With almost 40 years of experience in the restaurant and retail industry in Spain, the group operates today a total of 16 different brands, including casual dining chains such as the VIPS concept (retail and restaurant), GINOS, The WOK, TIO PEPE restaurants and the international brand T.G.I. FRIDAY's. Grupo VIPS is also Starbucks Coffee joint venture partner since 2002 for the Spanish, French and now Portuguese markets. It also owns and operates 11 premium restaurants amongst which are the celebrated Iroco, Teatriz and El Bodegón. As of September 2008, Grupo VIPS operates 400 restaurants and stores and employs more than 10,450 people.
For additional information, please visit our website at www.grupovips.com