There may be some deluded souls who still question Starbucks’ ability to sell latte to the masses and populate the planet with coffeehouses. But Howard Schultz’s caffeinated plans for 40,000 worldwide units—more than two-and-half times the current global store count—are steaming along, with some 2,500 new stores expected to be serving up frappachinos this year. The 55-year-old Schultz also is tapping into the insatiable demand for entertainment content. Starbucks launched its own record label, Hear Music, last year and has partnered with Apple to allow consumers using iPhones, iPod touches or laptops to browse, search for, preview, buy and download music from the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store.
An advocate of conservation and the Fairtrade movement, Schultz is a longtime champion of progressive employment practices that include providing health benefits even to part-time workers, a legacy of his growing up in a working-class family living with no health insurance. His efforts have achieved international recognition. In November, the U.K.’s First magazine conferred on him the Award for Responsible Capitalism 2007 for putting social responsibility at the heart of the company’s strategy.
Borders to offer free resolution workshops
ANN ARBOR, Mich. Borders said Thursday that it is offering customers free in store events throughout the month of January to help them kick start their new year’s resolutions and learn how to keep them through the year. Programs include wellness fairs, yoga classes and diet seminars.
Borders reported that local organizations and community groups will be featured in activities and events at its stores across the country ranging from fitness centers and hospitals to singles groups and retirement centers.
Schulze sells 440K shares of company stock
MINNEAPOLIS Best Buy chairman and founder Richard Schulze sold 440,000 shares of Best Buy stock last week valued at $22.4 million. Schulze sold the stock at prices ranging from $50.71 to $51.18 per share. Earlier this month, Schulze sold 2.35 million shares valued at more than $120 million.
While Schulze’s stock sales are considerable, they represent just a fraction of his holdings at Best Buy. He’s estimated to still hold more than 68 million shares of stock amassed during 41 years with the company.