While the Indian audience has Café Coffee Day, Barista and Chaayos as some of its leading beverage chains, the scenario on world level is a whole different Ball game. Here are the top three from the three major coffee consuming nations on earth, and while they may have been incepted there, they have spread their wings to be counted among the leading coffee chains globally. The United States of America has Starbucks, the United Kingdom has Costa Coffee, and Australia has McCafé. These three are the largest coffee chains currently active in the franchise business worldwide.
Three University fellows, English teacher Jerry Baldwin, history teacher Zev Siegl, and writer Gordon Bowker, were inspired to open a coffee shop by coffee roasting entrepreneur Alfred Peet. Little did Peet know that they would end up buying him out barely a decade later. Starbuck was founded on March 3, 1971, in Seattle, Washington. The name was derived from the first mate’s name in Moby Dick, and giving credence to it was the twin-tailed mermaid (a siren in Greek myths), which has now become an integral part of millennial culture.
After establishing a repute, the schoolmasters sold Starbuck over to Howard Schultz in 1987, and Shultz rebranded the name as Starbucks, with a view to expand further. By 1989, 46 stores had forayed their way into the markets across the Northwestern and Midwestern America.
At the time it became public and offered an IPO in the share market, Starbucks already had 140 outlets. That was in 1992. As of 2019, Starbucks is the world’s leading coffee chain, with over 28000 locations worldwide. The coffee of Starbucks is typically described as the primary representative of the ‘Second wave coffee”, a movement that popularized artisanal coffee, in particular the dark roasted variety. With the whole world falling head over heels in love with their beverages, Starbucks is expected to scale further growth from here, according to Forbes.
Starbucks franchise costs start from USD 315,000.
While the idea of Starbucks was being brewed in America, the Costa Brothers of London were grinding their brains as well. Sergei and Bruno Costa, along with their family had moved to England from Parma, Italy, sometime in the 1960s. Their quest for a thriving family business resulted in the inception of a roastery by the name of Costa Coffee, in 1971. Initially only supplying to local traders, they finally set up a serving coffee outlet in Vauxhall Bridge Road, London, in 1978. It had 41 stores across UK by 1995, and was then acquired by Whitbread, UK’s largest hospitality brand.
Ironically enough, this British Coffee Chain was acquired by the American beverage giant The Coca-Cola Company for a whopping 4.9 billion USD in 2019. At the time of acquisition, Costa Coffee had 3,401 outlets across 31 countries.
Costa Coffee franchise costs require GBP 250,000 or USD 320,000
Owned by the world’s biggest QSR franchise McDonalds, McCafé was an Australian concept. Launched in 1993 by McDonalds Licensee Ann Brown in Melbourne, it was aimed towards a growing trend, the espresso coffee. McDonalds CEO Charlie Bell endorsed it, and the idea picked on.
Pretty soon, standalone outlets starting being incepted, and the idea picked up. It reached a point where many of the existing McDonalds outlets were turned into McCafé, and the menus were merged to strike the chord of balance between the food and beverages.
With more than 1000 outlets in Australia and 900+ in Germany, McCafé has a total of 5000+ outlets across the globe. Not only that, but McCafé has also played a pivotal role in upgrading the overall sales for McDonalds.
The franchising structure is similar to McDonalds, but the exclusive café costs start lesser, from USD 250,000.