Starbucks Corp. has signed a deal with Chinese joint-venture partner Maxim’s Caterers Ltd., that gives the Seattle-based coffee company full ownership of Starbucks retail outlets in six Chinese regions, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
The agreement gives Seattle-based Starbucks 100 percent ownership of the 250 stores it has run with the Hong Kong-based company in the provinces or municipalities of Guangdong, Hainan, Sichuan, Shaanxi and Hubei and Chongqing. Starbucks previously owned a 70 percent stake in those markets.
“Full ownership of our stores in Central, South and Western China is part of our broader strategy to build China as our second home market outside of the U.S.,” John Culver, president of Starbucks International, said in a statement.
The move represents the company’s latest expanded reach into the world’s second leading economy. In November, Starbucks announced it would more than triple the 450 stores it now has in mainland China.