Starbucks Still Looking for a Soul

Back in 2007 Howard Schultz penned a memo that would have been called the “peanut butter manifesto” if Brad Garlinghouse were not destined to write it a year later. In it, Schultz warns that the company had lost their unique soul in the process of becoming the success that they were at that time; with cookie cutter stores, products not related to coffee, and automatic espresso machines that any monkey could work.

Fast forward to today and Starbucks announces a 97% drop in earnings while under Schultz’s watch and what do they highlight? Fewer cookie cutter stores but still cookie cutter in nature, expanded non-coffee products like smoothies and pastry products, and replacement of old automatic espresso machines with new automatic espresso machines. Someone needs to send Schultz the memo he wrote… the crowd at StarbucksGossip.com is overwhelmingly negative.

Besides closing the stores, Starbucks has cut more than 1,000 positions — many of which were unfilled — and introduced a slew of new products, including Vivanno smoothie drinks and breakfast pastries.

The company also replaced aging espresso makers and launched new single-cup Clover brewing machines in some markets.

[From Starbucks 4Q profit drops 97 pct on closure costs: Financial News - Yahoo! Finance]