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Starbucks sees sales jump as American market recovers from COVID-19

Starbucks has reported consolidated net revenues of US$6.7 billion for its 13-week fiscal second quarter, ended 28 March 2021. The marks an increase of 11 per cent from the prior year, mainly driven by a 15 per cent growth in comparable store sales.

Starbucks attributes this growth to “lapping” the unfavourable impact of business disruption in the prior year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and current strength in United States company-operated sales. Revenue was partially offset by the unfavourable impact of Global Coffee Alliance transition-related activities.

Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) operating margin of 14.8 per cent increased from 8.1 per cent in the prior year primarily driven by sales leverage from business recovery and the lapping of COVID-19 related costs in the prior year, partially offset by growth and investments in wages and benefits for store partners.

“I am very pleased with our progress to date in fiscal 2021, as our second quarter results demonstrated impressive momentum in the business with full sales recovery in the US. Our strong results validate our ability to adapt to changes in our environment and the needs of our customers,” says Kevin Johnson, President and CEO of Starbucks.

“We have positioned Starbucks for the inevitable great human reconnection that we see unfolding in the US and will propagate in every market around the world, where people once again connect with others face-to-face to heal, to belong, to reflect, to share, and to celebrate. Starbucks was built for this moment, and as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, we remain confident in our ability to execute our ‘Growth at Scale’ agenda and unlock the full potential of the Starbucks brand.”

Global comparable store sales increased 15 per cent, driven by a 19 per cent increase in average ticket, partially offset by a 4 per cent decline in comparable transactions.

Americas comparable store sales increased 9 per cent, driven by a 22 per cent increase in average ticket, partially offset by a 10 per cent decline in comparable transactions. US comparable store sales increased 9 per cent, driven by a 21 per cent increase in average ticket, partially offset by a 10 per cent decline in comparable transactions

International comparable store sales increased 35 per cent, driven by a 26 per cent increase in comparable transactions and a 7 per cent increase in average ticket. China comparable store sales increased 91 per cent, driven by a 93 per cent increase in transactions, slightly offset by a 1 per cent decline in average ticket. International and China comparable store sales are inclusive of a benefit from value-added tax exemptions in China reinstated as of 1 January 2021, of approximately 4 per cent and 9 per cent, respectively.

The company opened five net new stores in the second quarter of fiscal 2021, yielding 3 per cent year-over-year unit growth, ending the period with 32,943 stores globally, of which 51 per cent and 49 per cent were company-operated and licensed, respectively.

Net new store openings reflect the impact of approximately 300 US and Canada company-operated store closures in relation to the acceleration of the Americas Trade Area Transformation initiative announced last June, which is part of Starbucks ongoing strategy to strengthen and optimise its portfolio.

Stores in the US and China comprised 62 per cent of the company’s global portfolio at the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2021, with 15,288 and 4973 stores, respectively.

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