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Old 11-01-2018, 05:23 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,783 posts, read 10,170,620 times
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Over the past year, I've noticed that Starbucks has been adding and expanding its Tri-Cities presence--somewhat surprisingly--and rather aggressively, at least for this area.

The bulk of the stores have been opened within grocery/Target stores in the area--which from my understanding means the stores (like Target, Kroger, Ingles, etc) are licensed legally by Starbucks to use their products, branding and coffee, but the employees behind the Starbucks counters are employees of that specific big box/grocery store (and not Starbucks employees).

New stores added since 2017:

Food City, Gray, TN
Ingles, Johnson City, TN (Boones Creek)
Ingles, Kingsport, TN
State of Franklin and University, Johnson City, TN
The Pinnacle, Bristol, TN

Tri-cities now has a total of 17 stores. (unless I missed 1 or 2?)

Johnson City - 7 (2 stand alone stores, 4 in-store, 1 ETSU campus)
Gray - 1 (in store)
Jonesboro - 1 (in store)
Kingsport - 3 (1 stand alone store, 2 in-store)
Bristol, TN - 1 stand alone
Bristol, VA - 2 (1 stand alone store, 1 in-store)
Elizabethton - 1 (in store)
Greeneville - 1 (in store)

Starbucks on the whole is expanding, but an expanding Starbucks presence means people are opening their wallets in that area, and can afford a $5 mocha and a $3 large coffee, on the regular.

Usually it's a good bell-weather indicator for an area (higher home prices, higher income) when it has many Starbucks. Or in this case, many Starbucks both in-store and stand-alone.

Last edited by jjbradleynyc; 11-01-2018 at 05:32 PM..
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Old 11-01-2018, 10:59 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
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I never thought of this. Now that you mention it...

The Pinnacle store is plenty self-explanatory. So is the additional standalone by ETSU. Aside from that spot on N.Roan going back to Science Hill, I don't know where you can get a coffee close to downtown that isn't a full restaurant.

The "in-store" Starbucks are pretty cut down. I don't think they serve food. They are basically a frame with some coffee making machines. I'm sure these units cost comparatively nothing to put up, and can be staffed by 1-2 people. Considering there is nowhere to get a decent cup of coffee in Boones Creek or Gray, it's not surprising Starbucks would see what would bite in those communities. A spot in Ingles is low cost and low risk.

The thing is that, other than the standalone near ETSU and The Pinnacle, both of which are very high traffic areas, Starbucks has only committed to "light footprint" stores.
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Old 11-02-2018, 03:49 AM
 
Location: Kingsport
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Good points by jjbradleynyc and Serious Conversation. I think the bottom line is Starbucks is pretty good at developing new delivery models where there's a demand, but not enough demand to justify a stand-alone store.
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Old 11-02-2018, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Gray, TN
2,158 posts, read 3,955,180 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
I never thought of this. Now that you mention it...

The Pinnacle store is plenty self-explanatory. So is the additional standalone by ETSU. Aside from that spot on N.Roan going back to Science Hill, I don't know where you can get a coffee close to downtown that isn't a full restaurant.
Open Doors

I miss Java Rush.
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Old 11-02-2018, 08:39 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
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One reason I'm honestly surprised to see Starbucks expanding anywhere is that they used to be the place to go for public WiFi. When I was at ETSU back in the late 2000s, I'd go over to the North Roan Starbucks to meet people, work, etc., if I didn't want to be on campus.

Everywhere has WiFi now. You don't need to go to Starbucks for it. I don't drink coffee, but I will sneak over to one and have one of the refreshers about once a month.
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,783 posts, read 10,170,620 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
I never thought of this. Now that you mention it...

The Pinnacle store is plenty self-explanatory. So is the additional standalone by ETSU. Aside from that spot on N.Roan going back to Science Hill, I don't know where you can get a coffee close to downtown that isn't a full restaurant.

The "in-store" Starbucks are pretty cut down. I don't think they serve food. They are basically a frame with some coffee making machines. I'm sure these units cost comparatively nothing to put up, and can be staffed by 1-2 people. Considering there is nowhere to get a decent cup of coffee in Boones Creek or Gray, it's not surprising Starbucks would see what would bite in those communities. A spot in Ingles is low cost and low risk.

The thing is that, other than the standalone near ETSU and The Pinnacle, both of which are very high traffic areas, Starbucks has only committed to "light footprint" stores.
They do have food--pastries and the refrigerated options. Not sure about sandwiches though--maybe not?

It's fascinating to see the continued growth of Starbucks. While a Starbucks present-day for some is similar to seeing a McDonalds--ubiquitous presence--Starbucks will not locate in a town/city considered "small" or "economically depressed." Mcdonalds will go into small towns of 4 or 5,000 people--being the "go-to" spot for that town or rural region. (Wise, VA, Pennington Gap, VA, or Rogersville, TN, for example, come to mind)

Starbucks has grown into a brand that is recognizable by almost anyone in the US, (and for that matter in some areas globally). The coffee space is extremely competitive-and many chains are jumping on board to expand.

But none come to mind that have closely matched Starbucks expansion into most every city in the US over roughly 40,000 + population--other than possibly Dunkin Donuts.
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Johnson City, TN
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Quote:
It's fascinating to see the continued growth of Starbucks. While a Starbucks present-day for some is similar to seeing a McDonalds--ubiquitous presence--Starbucks will not locate in a town/city considered "small" or "economically depressed."
Maybe not a standalone Starbucks but they are working their way into smaller communities via the "in-store" model there is a Starbucks in Ingles in Greeneville and Elizabethton and in Food City in Middlesboro, KY.
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Old 11-02-2018, 01:02 PM
 
Location: Cookeville/Crossville
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With a strong economy, more people will spend 5 bucks on a cup of coffee, and as previously mentioned, adding small stores or kiosks within supermarkets is a easy way to expand with a low risk. I don't know if any of these exist in the Tri-Cities area or not, but in Crossville, a Seattle's Best Coffee kiosk was added inside Walmart(I found out today, actually, that Seattle's Best Coffee is owned by Starbucks). Last year, Starbucks opened inside Kroger. Expansion is hot right now.
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Old 11-02-2018, 08:52 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,783 posts, read 10,170,620 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llsmith42 View Post
With a strong economy, more people will spend 5 bucks on a cup of coffee, and as previously mentioned, adding small stores or kiosks within supermarkets is a easy way to expand with a low risk. I don't know if any of these exist in the Tri-Cities area or not, but in Crossville, a Seattle's Best Coffee kiosk was added inside Walmart(I found out today, actually, that Seattle's Best Coffee is owned by Starbucks). Last year, Starbucks opened inside Kroger. Expansion is hot right now.
Yeah, expansion seems to be hot right now. A strong economy is the current environment, and companies are taking calculated risks, it seems.

I would anticipate Dunkin Donuts will soon be making another push for expansion into the tri-cities area too. Everytime I go to the location on Stone Drive in Kingsport, there's a long line in the drive through. And then sometimes in the morning at the location on Fort Henry Drive, the line spills out on the shoulder of the highway.

There's big demand in the area for more Dunkin.
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Old 11-05-2018, 06:32 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
28,362 posts, read 21,261,754 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjbradleynyc View Post
Yeah, expansion seems to be hot right now. A strong economy is the current environment, and companies are taking calculated risks, it seems.

I would anticipate Dunkin Donuts will soon be making another push for expansion into the tri-cities area too. Everytime I go to the location on Stone Drive in Kingsport, there's a long line in the drive through. And then sometimes in the morning at the location on Fort Henry Drive, the line spills out on the shoulder of the highway.

There's big demand in the area for more Dunkin.
Virtually everyone in my social circle goes to Dunkin. I know Starbucks has lines too, so obviously people are going there, but Dunkin is just a lot more affordable for the average Joe, and a lot of folks will get a donut or something too.
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