- Though Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) grew its U.S. comparable-store sales by an impressive 7% in FQ3 to top peers, and has swatted away challengers before, the company could see some new competition in 2H and into 2015.
- Peet's Coffee & Tea plans to open 16 locations in Chicago, several of which sit in close proximity to Starbucks (SBUX) outlets.
- Peet's is owned by coffee brand giant Joh. A. Benckiser which directly challenges Starbucks in Europe, but has been more conservative to take on the Seattle giant in the U.S.
- The development in the Windy City follows a trend in NYC of more indie coffee shops opening aside Starbucks stores. A coffee app called Cups has also launched over the summer to some positive early results.
- What to watch: The westward march of Dunkin' Brands (NASDAQ:DNKN) and the potential expansion of Tim Hortons (NYSE:THI) could also be factors in the U.S. coffee market, although many analysts think the power of the SBUX brand and the continued strong demand for coffee will leave multi-channel Starbucks in solid shape.
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