“Starbucks Corp. is investing $100 million in the new Valor Siren Ventures Fund to help keep the Seattle-based coffee company focused on new ideas and technologies that will be good for both customers and business.” (Bizjournals.com)
This news came out after the 27th annual shareholders meeting. In fact, it was held for the first time at WaMu Theater in Seattle rather than its longtime venue at McCaw Hall. The funds will be invested in technologies, products and also solutions relating to food or retail. As Starbucks works to accelerate its innovation through external relationship, they feel that this is relevant to their company.
“The new fund is managed by private equity firm Valor Equity Partners. First, they will seek to raise an additional $300 million in the coming months from other strategic partners and key institutional investors. Starbucks said the investment “will serve as a growth driver for the next generation of food and retail start-up companies.”(Bizjournals.com)
Chief Operating Officer Roz Brewer stated that Starbucks will be moving away from what they call the “third place” feeling their stores give. At this time the feeling they are going for is convenience, comfort and connection. “I don’t want anyone to walk away today thinking this is about furniture or a new renovation strategy,” Brewer teased.” (Bizjournals.com)
It was said that they will also address a way to continue getting rid of the use of straws and adding a new greener cup. During the meeting last year, Starbucks announced a plan to launch a compostable cup within three years.
A few recyclable and compostable cups will be tested in New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, as well as London. Starbucks will chose the cups to be tested from its NextGen Cup Challenge winners. In addition Starbucks is rolling out recyclable strawless lids to all store in the United States and Canada.