This Wednesday, Starbucks announced that it will be closing 400 stores including 200 in Canada over the next 18 months due to the economic hit from the Covid-19 shutdowns.
Starbucks made the revelation in a filing to U.S. securities regulators. The Seattle-based company expects sales to fall by as much as $3.2 billion this quarter. Shares reportedly fell 4.5% in midday trading on Wednesday.
While the coffee business like many others has been greatly affected by the pandemic, Starbucks says it is already planning to look ahead to what the business will look like over the longer term. As USA Today reports, the company is planning to speed up plans for more stores to offer pick-up only services and drive-through windows and boost its mobile ordering app: “As we navigate through the COVID-19 crisis, we are accelerating our store transformation plans to address the realities of the current situation, while still providing a safe, familiar and convenient experience for our customers.” CEO Kevin Johnson said in a press release.
Although the company will close up to 400 locations, it still plans to open approximately 300 new stores in its current fiscal year, down from its original goal of 600, the news site reports.
The company said its “U.S. store portfolio transformation” includes the expansion of “new Starbucks Pickup stores in dense markets including New York City, Chicago, Seattle, and San Francisco, and convenience-led enhancements such as curbside, drive-thru and walk-up windows in suburban areas.”