Starbucks vs. McDonalds ~ Brand Mix

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Starbucks vs. McDonalds

A big news day for Starbucks. First, the WSJ has a front page article about McDonalds foray into espresso beverages, baristas and all. Later in the day, Starbucks announces that Howard Schultz is returning to his role as CEO replacing the unfortunately named given the circumstances, Jim Donald who is leaving.

By this morning, most everything that could be written has been written. Here's one of the news pieces that quotes Schultz as saying most of his company's headaches have been "self-induced."

Here's a link to John Moore's thoughts about the McDonalds move. John is a Starbucks expert having worked there for a number of years and he focuses on the challenges that McDonalds will have trying to replicate the Starbucks experience within its ultra-efficient fast food operation.

For general Starbucks gossip, go here. And finally for some other thoughts about the battle between McDonalds and Starbucks, read Danielle Blumenthal's comments here.

The point she makes, same as my own reaction, is how both great and how awful it is for Starbucks that McDonalds should be now thought of as a competitor. On the one hand, it shows the success that Starbucks has had penetrating into the mainstream. On the other, it shows how close it has become to being just another commodity.

Based on his comments and his infamous leaked memo, that's something Mr. Schultz is all too aware of and is coming back to fix.

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