By Desiree Perez
By Desiree Perez
When I think of all the things this world needs, another Starbucks is pretty low on the list. Unfortunately, that’s what we’re getting.
It’s not hard to find a Starbucks near you. Everywhere you turn, you see a Starbucks or at least the little green logo.
Even so, Starbucks has announced its plan to expand worldwide. The number of locations in the Unites States alone is expected to jump from 8,800 to 20,000 in the next few years, with an average of six new stores popping up daily.
Upon hearing this figure, I was struck by the image of Starbucks breeding other Starbucks in the same manner as Gremlins, only instead of water, frappuccinos spawn more chains. Needless to say, it’s pretty horrifying.
With such an ambitious expansion goal, I wouldn’t be surprised if Starbucks board meetings were held at 2 a.m. I can see all the board members shouting out business plans rapid fire, hopped up on their own espresso with shaking hands and bloodshot eyes.
For small towns aching for the pseudo-sophistication of the “hip” conglomerate coffee house, this has to be good news. You’re not on the map until you’ve got a Starbucks nearby. Not only that, but opening the only Starbucks in town is bound to stimulate the area’s economy.
Unfortunately for the small businesses it immitates, Starbucks targets smaller coffee houses as new locations for their own chain.
If it would stop there, I could be convinced that there was nothing sinister about Starbucks. Much to my dismay, that is not where the plan ends.
Not only does Starbucks intend to populate formerly Starbucks-free zones, it also has an infill operation on the agenda.
Infill is a business term that means putting another Starbucks within a block of an existing Starbucks.
Even the slightest inconvenience might dissuade a person from going to Starbucks. If you’ve ever thought walking across the street was an easy feat, you’re wrong. “Going to the other side of the street can be a barrier,” said Launi Skinner, the vice president in charge of store development with Starbucks.
Starbucks is not only considerate of its pedestrian patrons. They’re also watching out for the caffeine addicts behind the wheel. It’s no surprise that drive-through Starbucks are gaining more popularity. I can’t imagine things getting much worse, except if Starbucks was to introduce a new line of intravenous caffeine products.
I’m not the only one who thinks Starbucks has gone too far. Most people recognize the horrible reality of Starbucks’ overreaching empire.
Even children can grasp the concept that there are too many Starbucks. The family movie “Shrek 2” ridiculed Starbucks’ overpopulation. In the scene, frightened citizens of Far Far Away flee from one obvious mock up of Starbucks and run across the street to the safety of another.
“There was a Starbucks across from a Starbucks, and that, my friends, is the end of the universe,” comedian Lewis Black said, recounting his Starbucks experience.
When asked if there were too many Starbucks in the world, Black commented “When you build a Starbucks across from a Starbucks, that’s it, game over.” If only Starbucks would take the hint.