Throwaway995485: In Australia they ran at a loss everywhere….until they packed up and left.
Skraff: They are doing this in Ireland at present.
All of the other coffee shops in Dublin had a free coffee day to raise awareness:
They also open up new cafes without correct permission:
They keep getting closed, but the process takes 1-2 years so they can choke out competition in the mean time.
BlueMountainsMajesty: This is a long, comprehensive page so here is a link to the relevant chapter [Market Strategy](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Starbucks#Market_strategy)
AnselaJonla: Where I live in the UK there’s not a single Starbucks. There used to be, but it closed down a few months ago.
Instead we have Costa Coffee. Loads of Costa. Seven outlets, plus the ones in the cinemas, plus the Costa machines in Co-op stores and petrol stations.
RipThrotes: There’s a Starbucks on one campus at my school, but they also have a truck and have just replaced the green mountain coffee in one student center too. It’s made the coffee price at the student center rise a dollar… I like my coffee black, but tbh I’m not that keen on pike place for how much it costs and how invasive it has been. Also, they aren’t real Starbucks since they are like franchised through the university so they don’t operate under the same principles, and also don’t accept gift cards which is annoying as a broke college kid, but I digress.
Meta_Digital: Starbucks isn’t unique here; it’s just really good at it. This is pretty much standard business practices in the US. It’s how grocery stores have operated since the start and why Wal-Mart is so successful.
Dr_Merkwurdigliebe: When I started college, there were three Starbucks on campus and a cafe in the library that served Starbucks coffee. By the time I left, I think there were seven or eight within an area of the city 10 blocks by 5 blocks if you include the one in the university hospital. They just kept building and building to shut out literally any other competition. It was a pain in the ass because their little corner cafes didn’t have as much seating as their main stores, but still put other coffee houses where you could sit and relax for a while out of business.
NukaQuokka: And then after a number of years they’ll shut some of the stores down, and all the regular customers are absorbed by the remaining stores, thus creating a massive increase in sales but a dramatic decrease in customer service.
I work at Starbucks and there were 2 other stores within a mile of my location. One of them was intentionally closed, and most of the clientele came over to my store since the other store is already insanely busy since it’s a drive thru and right by the highway. Our morning shifts are now chaotic. The barista working on bar literally does not stop making drinks unless someone relieves them. Last I heard, over 30% of our orders come from Mobile Order & Pay, and that was within the first three months of MOP being released- I know for sure that number has increased since. What’s worse is that for the longest time corporate didn’t acknowledge that we needed more staff in order to cover MOP and so my store would only have 3 people on the floor during our morning rush. Apparently in January they will be making changes to the way we handle MOP, but in the meantime we have to get through the holiday season.
For the most part, I really do like my job. Some of the regular customers and most of my coworkers are really nice and fun to work with, and the company does provide its partners (employees) with some pretty nice benefits. But I just worked a horrible Black Friday shift so I’m a little bitter right now lol.
antjenkins: I’ve read (admittedly, in *Slate*) that having a Starbucks near an independent actually increases sales for the independent.
Of course, this was in 2007, and it *was* in *Slate*.
Dicethrower: This is why you need very specific anti-monopoly laws instead of just banning general business practices that coincidentally lead to monopolies, because otherwise you just get into a discussion every time some company finds a loophole. Attempting to set this up would be illegal on its own, let alone the actual practice of it.
HitlerButInSpace: I work for Starbucks, and let me tell you, corporate and management suck major cock. They’re assholes to their own employees, expecting us to work 3-1130 PM one day, and 330 AM- 1 PM the next.
elyl: “To become anti-competitive”? Not sure that’s the correct phrase. It’s to prevent competition.
MysteryDildoBandit: This kind of shit is the reason I’ve spent exactly $0 at starbucks in my life.
KingCon5: My teacher once went to China (or maybe it was Taiwan…) and he said that there was an intersection with four Starbucks on each corner…
runneri: No amount of free coffees could let them win in Australia. ☕
NoNameZone: I work in a local coffee shop right next to a Starbucks and they’ll never choke us out cause were 10x better than they could ever be.
ApolloniusDrake: So they best the competition by being competitive? Then get a monopoly.
thenixnerd: Geographically focused monopoly.
YenOlass: starbucks tried this in Australia, but failed miserably. They opened 84 stores, 60 of which had to close within the first 10 years.
anechoicmedia: The only source link provided for that specific claim is the notorious Naomi Klein’s book *No Logo*, which is highly suspect.
As to whether it’s anti-competitive, it depends on how you define the good they are selling. If you think of coffee stores as bespoke, individually competing vendors, it might be like collusion, but if you think of “coffee as a utility”, it might not.
As an analogy, you don’t analyze a cell phone company on the basis of whether their individual towers are profitable ventures. The cell phone company is building a network that is sold as a bundled good, and with benefits to being inside that network. The network in total gains value by being available in more places even if individual nodes are money-losers, because people depend on having the capability there. This is also similar to how city bus systems are usually mandated to run money-losing routes across their entire tax area, because you can’t rely on the bus system as a primary mode of transport if it only services the half of the city it is profitable to serve.
Coffee, and fast food in general, are sort of like infrastructure. Once you’re a Starbucks customer, you benefit from having product knowledge and confidence that you can take with you to any Starbucks location. If there’s a Starbucks in every corner of town, you never need any mental overhead of finding new coffee places, wondering if they serve good stuff, wondering what the atmosphere will be, etc. Starbucks wants to be your coffee provider for life, not the owner of some scattered, individually-profit-maximizing coffee shops. It is arguable that the customer is better off from this arrangement.
nickkom: I like how Starbucks gets flack for decades for having over priced products, but here they are getting criticized for operating at a loss.
Did you know they offer benefits to employees only working 20 hours a week? Or that they regularly hire people with limited job experience and promote from within? Or that they generally pay above minimum wage and give regular raises?
Not saying they are angels, but when a company is criticized for doing two opposite things, it makes think a balanced picture is not the focus.
SyndicalismIsEdge: Isn’t this price dumping and therefore illegal in most jurisdictions?
CryptexCS: Wow I clicked the link to Starbucks’s Wikipedia page and inadvertently saw that one of its subsidiaries was a restaurant called La Boulange Bakery, which I remember used to be a great cafe where I lived before it closed and I moved away in 2016. I couldn’t figure out why it closed when it was doing well and had some pretty good chicken arugula sandwiches. I wish Starbucks hadn’t closed that place because it was a great place to hand out after school and my friends that still live there liked it.
TL;DR: found out why a good restaurant closed. Ty OP
Dumb Starbucks, barely legal.
wangdingus: Nathan For You is a great show.
Surfer_Rick: I love law loopholes. It’s like learning a spell, since laws are basically words transformed into powerful effects.
mgedvado: If true, they’ll be sued within a month.
theRiley3: But why though?
groscoe: Nathan Fielder
satanicpuppy: Dumb stunt. Parody doesn’t protect you if you plan to keep the business open, and reusing their logo unchanged on a commercial product is going to get you in trouble with trademark law.