I remember a local news station profiling Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz 5 or 6 years ago and hearing him vow that
Starbucks would never have value meals. He also talked about how many people laughed in his face when he asked them to invest in a company selling coffee drinks for $5.
This was also back when they were opening stores literally across the street from each other with no plans of slowing down. Boy have things changed.
This week, Starbucks introduced "breakfast pairings" but they might as well call them what they are - value meals. For $3.95 you can get a drip coffee and a one of four hot sandwich or a latte with oatmeal or coffee cake.
The ironic thing: McDonald's has been copying Starbucks for the last few years, and stealing many of their customers with good coffee at half the price. Now Starbucks is emulating McDonalds.
Why in the world would Starbucks do that? Store sales are down 10% and net income down 69%. Even when the economy turns around, I doubt we'll ever see $5 coffee drinks selling in record numbers again. Especially now that people know they can get them same thing for half the price.