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Starbucks set to open 100th store in Vietnam

Starbucks plans to open its 100th store in Vietnam in the second quarter of this year, a decade after first coming to the country, and keep expanding further.

The U.S. chain now has 87 outlets in seven localities, 50 of them in Ho Chi Minh City.

It has over 800 staff and 200 coffee "masters" it has trained.

It is among the few foreign players to remain in the competitive Vietnamese market, but its number of stores is modest compared with some local chains such as Highlands Coffee (592 stores) and The Coffee House (154). Its Vietnam general manager, Patricia Marques, told reporters Tuesday the chain sees new opportunities in localities such as Binh Duong and Quy Nhon provinces.

Vietnam is forecast to have 5,200 coffee chain stores in 2025, according to U.K.’s Allegra World Coffee Portal, which means huge competition for chains seeking to expand.

Already some chains are scaling down. Last month PhinDeli closed some stores at prime locations while food company KIDO divested from TTV, the operator of the Chuk beverage chain.

But on the other hand, Highlands and Phuc Long continued to open new outlets.

The Coffee House plans to reopen its Signature stores this year, while Passio Coffee, after 15 years of selling mostly takeaway products, is now opening at more locations and offering on-site services.

New players such as Katinat, Phe La and Cheese Coffee are also in the mix.

Finding a suitable location is also a challenge, Marques said, pointing out that while in Thailand property developers often seek partnerships with major brands before they start building malls, in Vietnam this is not the case.

Starbucks posted record global revenues of US$32.3 billion in financial year 2022 (ending October 3), a 11% growth.

It eyes 10-12% growth this year.

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