Starbucks’ growth plans include major international push

New York City -- Starbucks Corp. is looking beyond its cafes for expansion in the future. Detailing its growth plans Wednesday at its investor conference, the chain announced it plans to triple the number of its cafes in China, offer more products in grocery stores and open new kinds of stores to build on its recent recovery.

“We are particularly pleased with the response we’re seeing from our Chinese customers, and expect to operate at least 1,500 Starbucks stores in Mainland China by 2015,” John Culver, president of Starbucks Coffee International.

Starbucks also plans to improve its U.S. retail operations by adding mobile payment options and improving the way it serves customers during peak hours. Addressing the “myth of U.S. saturation,” Cliff Burrows, president of Starbucks Coffee U.S., said that while the company will not add stores in the United States at the pace it once did, it will seek out new locations in targeted neighborhoods to capture significant retail growth opportunities.

Starbucks executives said they will keep considering acquisitions -- big and small -- that could help the company develop more products to sell through other retailers.