SEATTLE, March 19, 2014 – Howard Schultz, chairman, president and ceo of Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX), and Oprah Winfrey, global media leader and philanthropist, today announced a first-of-its-kind collaboration to co-create Teavana® Oprah Chai Tea. Beginning April 29, Teavana Oprah Chai will be sold in Starbucks and Teavana stores across the U.S. and Canada, with Starbucks making a donation for each product sold to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation to benefit educational opportunities for youth.
Oprah Winfrey personally developed the tea with Teavana’s leading teaologist Naoko Tsunoda. The distinctive blend of tea, which features a bold infusion of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom and cloves, blended with loose-leaf black tea and rooibos, will be made available to customers in time for Mother’s Day in the U.S. and Canada in handcrafted latte and loose-leaf tea formats.
“I looove tea,” said Oprah Winfrey. “My daily tea ritual is a vital part of my morning. Savory and spicy chai, with its deep flavor, has long been a favorite of mine. When Howard Schultz offered to have me come into the Starbucks tasting room and create my very own tea blend, I thought that sounded like such a unique opportunity and fun to the tenth power. To share one of my favorite things with the rest of the world and support youth education at the same time is truly the perfect blend.”
“With the introduction of Teavana Oprah Chai, we are going to elevate the tea experience in the same way we did for coffee,” said Schultz. “Partnering with Oprah Winfrey in the creation of this distinctive and remarkable tea is a strong next step forward in accomplishing this objective, while also giving back in a meaningful way through the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation. I am personally humbled to work with such an inspirational leader and visionary who shares so many of our core values and beliefs. I truly believe that, together, we will set the bar for a world-class tea experience at Starbucks and Teavana.”
Contributions from sales of Teavana Oprah Chai products will go to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation, which provides funding for the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa and is dedicated to helping its graduates attend colleges and universities. The foundation will support additional youth education through Girls Inc., National CARES Mentoring Movement, Pathways to College and the U.S. Dream Academy. For more information on these organizations, please visit www.oprah.com/SteepYourSoul.
Starbucks Tea Heritage and Future with Teavana
Tea has been a part of Starbucks heritage since 1971, when the company was founded as Starbucks Coffee, Tea and Spices. In 2012, Starbucks acquired Teavana and has taken steps to integrate Teavana® teas into its Starbucks stores. Customers will soon experience a variety of Teavana products at Starbucks, including handcrafted drinks, loose-leaf teas and tea merchandise. In addition, the company recently launched a new store concept called Teavana Fine Tea + Tea Bars in Seattle and New York. The new tea bars feature a carefully curated assortment of handcrafted tea beverages, premium loose-leaf teas, tea-inspired food offerings and beautifully made tea merchandise, making the ritual of tea more elevated and accessible for customers. Starbucks today announced plans to open additional Teavana Fine Tea + Tea Bars in Chicago, Los Angeles and additional stores in New York City later this year. The Tea Bars will also feature Teavana Oprah Chai.
Also unveiled today is www.SteepYourSoul.com, a new online destination built around the concept of community featuring original videos and articles that inspire moments of reflection and an insider’s look behind-the-scenes at how this partnership came together and how Oprah “steeps her soul.” In addition, starting this Sunday, March 23, as an extension of OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network’s Emmy award-winning series “Super Soul Sunday,” Oprah will engage with spiritual thought leaders, best-selling authors and filmmakers about how they personally steep their soul. Interviews will feature Shirley MacLaine, Arianna Huffington, Gary Zukav, Louie Schwartzberg and Sue Monk Kidd, among many others. The site also features information on the new Teavana Oprah Chai and the youth education organizations that will be supported through this partnership.
About Starbucks Corporation
Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting the highest-quality arabica coffee. 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.
Founded in 1997, the company offers new tea enthusiasts and tea connoisseurs alike its “Heaven of Tea” retail experience where passionate and knowledgeable “Teaologists” engage and educate them about the ritual and enjoyment of tea. The company’s mission is to establish Teavana as the most recognized and respected brand in the tea industry by expanding the culture of tea across the world. For more information, visit www.teavana.com.
About Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation
The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation provides funding for the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa and is dedicated to helping its graduates attend colleges and universities. In December 2000, during a visit with Nelson Mandela, Oprah Winfrey pledged to build a school for girls in South Africa. In January 2007, the doors opened to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa. Through the Foundation, Oprah has contributed to the empowerment of scores of girls and their families.
About Girls Inc.
Girls Inc. inspires all girls to be strong, smart, and bold through life-changing programs and experiences that help girls navigate gender, economic, and social barriers. Research-based curricula, delivered by trained, mentoring professionals in a positive all-girl environment equip girls to achieve academically; lead healthy and physically active lives; manage money; navigate media messages; and discover an interest in science, technology, engineering, and math. The network of local Girls Inc. nonprofit organizations serves 136,000 girls ages 6 – 18 annually across the United States and Canada.
About National CARES Mentoring Movement
The National CARES Mentoring Movement, a community-engagement movement, was created in 2005 in the wake of Hurricane Katrina with the goal of ensuring that our nation’s impoverished children are encircled by caring adults and offered a sure pathway out of poverty. Willing and present to help bring struggling children to promise is a growing army of CARES mentors, recruited, trained and deployed to schools and youth-serving organizations in desperate need of tutors, role models and inspiration. Research shows that mentoring is a low-cost, high-results solution to a deepening crisis, and when done well can redirect even the most challenged youngsters’ lives. Working through 58 local CARES Mentor-Recruitment Affiliates across the nation, National CARES, has recruited more than 125,000 mentors. Presently, three million children are receiving mentoring services in the United States, and there are 15 million children in critical need of greater adult guidance and love. Deepening its commitment to secure and advance vulnerable youngsters, National CARES is building group-mentoring, consciousness-changing, replicable programs designed to override the crises that children in unstable communities face each day and that are derailing their lives. The National CARES Mentoring Movement’s innovative Rising Initiatives focus on the social, emotional and academic development of children and the wellness of the adults who mentor, parent and guide them. Linking arms and aims with committed partners, and employing evidence-based programs and strategies, National CARES assures that all of our nation’s children will soar and realize the full measure of their promise and dreams.
About Pathways to College
Pathways to College provides motivated teens with the information, guidance and support they need to become the best high school students, college applicants, and college graduates they can be. Pathways has developed a successful strategy that links college access with school improvement. At each participating high school, up to 100 high-potential students with a broad range of academic accomplishments are identified and paired with committed teachers who work with students after school hours as a structured teaching/learning team. Pathways students are also coached to be intentional, productive school leaders who model success for their peers and demonstrate that a college degree is an achievable goal, thereby positively and demonstrably impacting their school’s climate. Since establishment as an independent non-profit in 2003, nearly 2,500 students have been enrolled and 100% of graduates have been accepted by at least one college.
About U.S. Dream Academy
Established in 1998, U.S. Dream Academy is a national afterschool and mentoring program that helps our nation’s children reach for their dreams. We empower those children most at risk of incarceration to maximize their potential by providing them with academic, social and values enrichment through supportive mentoring and the use of technology. The vision is to create an army of young men and women with positive dreams for their lives, equipped with the tools to make those dreams a reality. U.S. Dream Academy’s newest initiative is focused on accelerating the reading levels of 3rd grade students using innovative and research based reading strategies combined with positive youth development principles. We seek to increase the protective factors and academic performance of our students to ensure successful graduation from high school. Academic achievement decreases the risk of future incarceration significantly.