Starbucks to close 150 USA cafes to combat slowing growth

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He also pointed to the impact of the company's response to the April arrest of two black men in a Philadelphia store, including the May 29 afternoon closure of 8,000 US stores for anti-racial bias training.

Starbucks cut its earnings outlook and plans to close more under-performing stores as part of a multi-pronged response to what chief executive Kevin Johnson called an unacceptable level of same-store sales growth Tuesday.

Stifel pulled its target price down slightly, to $55, just a bit above current levels. The company's stock is now down about 7% in 2018, well off the S&P 500.

"Our recent performance dos not reflect the potential of our exceptional brand and is not acceptable", he said.

The changes came weeks after Starbucks Executive Chairman Howard Schultz announced he would leave the role in June.

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Starbucks shares slipped almost 2 percent in after-hours trading. China is the company's biggest growth driver with same-store sales rising 4 percent in the last reported quarter. Maw said the company is bringing in an outside consulting firm to find cost savings, which Starbucks hopes to realize as soon as its fourth quarter.

Historically, the Seattle-based company closes roughly 50 stores a year. Last month, Starbucks closed about 8,000 cafes so its employees could undergo racial-bias training, which did hurt sales in the quarter, Johnson said. In the past year, Starbucks has opened nearly 1,000 new stores in the Americas, which includes the U.S., Canada and Latin America. "It is not an excuse", for the 1 percent growth rate, he added.

According to Bloomberg, the nationwide chain plans to reduce its amount of stores in "densely populated markets" across America, with the newly announced CEO saying "our shareholders deserve better".

Starbucks also said it will shift new store openings to under penetrated markets and slow licensed store growth.

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