Never underestimate the power of one

Black-and-white Starbucks Pike Place original store exterior

From one store in Seattle’s Pike Place Market in 1971, to nearly 33,000 stores serving customers globally, Starbucks has always believed that coffee can help build community and power human connections. This third place, where all are welcome, is more important than ever.

By Kevin Johnson, president and ceo:

Starbucks Annual Meeting of Shareholders typically presents a moment of reflection. And this year, perhaps more than any other, that reflection has led me to one place: 1912 Pike.

It was there – 50 years ago – where the vision for a different kind of company began.  With just one store. 

For Starbucks, I have always believed it is my responsibility to have the wisdom to know what to honor and preserve from past, while at the same time having the courage to boldly re-imagine our future.  I believe we must stay true to the foundation of this great company — to our mission, grounded in humanity — and to our culture of warmth and belonging. At the same time, we must look boldly to the future, always evolving the third place for our changing world. 

I also believe as all of humanity emerges from this pandemic and as we advance on the journey for social justice and equity, we are on the precipice of another seismic shift as people once again seek human connection. Starbucks was built for connection. We were built for this moment. And for the moments to come. 

With more than 400,000 green apron partners around the world, we are grounded in the belief that for-profit companies need to serve a purpose beyond the pursuit of profit. We have shown that a for-profit company can serve and create value for all stakeholders. We are a company that aspires to give back more than we take when it comes to people and the planet while creating prosperity for all who connect with Starbucks.

We are a company that will never underestimate the power of One. One idea. One store. One Mission. With one goal. To be a different kind of company.

thumbnail for New, more sustainable Starbucks cold cups are made with up to 20 percent less plastic

New, more sustainable Starbucks cold cups are made with up to 20 percent less plastic