Updated: February 16, 2019 5:55:08 pm
Starbucks will launch its first all-day dining cafe in Shanghai, featuring fresh Italian food, the U.S. coffee giant said in a statement on Friday.
The move signals part of the company’s effort to “to play the long game in China,” according to Belinda Wong, CEO of Starbucks China.
The coffee chain, which now operates more than 3,700 stores in 158 cities in China, is seeing slower growth in the country, with transactions down 2 percent in its first quarter.
China is likely to become an increasingly important market for coffee retailers such as Starbucks and Nestle due to the country’s low per-capita consumption of the beverage and rising middle-class affluence, according to a report by Bloomberg Intelligence.
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