Top 10: Global Coffee Shop Chains

Sergio Burns
- Leadership - Dec 17, 2014

Coffee is big business. As a commodity it is worth more than $100 billion which is greater than the values of natural gas, gold, brent oil, sugar and corn.

The world’s love for coffee has resulted in some of the globe’s most formidable food and drink businesses being formed, some being billion-dollar operations. Here is a look at 10 of the best coffee shop chains that have a global presence.

10. Tully’s Coffee

Tully's opened its first store in Seattle, Washington, as recently as 1992.  Inspired by the success of Starbucks, founder Tom Tully O'Keefe planned to rival his neighbour, but the company are now focused on providing consumers with the finest crafted coffee. Tom Tully O'Keefe is the present Chairman while Scott Peterson doubles as President and Chief Executive. In 2012 Tully's filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and Global Baristas bought the company for €7.3 million (£5.8 million, $9.15 million) at auction. Tully's now has a presence in Sweden.

9. Coffee Beanery

Coffee Beanery was founded by JoAnne and Julius Shaw in Dearborn, Michigan, USA, in 1976. JoAnne Shaw, at 71, is the company's Co-Founder and President of parent, Shaw Coffee Company. Coffee Beanery has a global presence with shops in exotic locations such as Guam and Lebanon, as well as outlets in Egypt, China and Cyprus.

8. Gloria Jeans

Founded by Gregg and Gloria Jean Kvetko in Chicago 1979, the coffee outlet was bought by Retail Food Group in 2013 for €131.3 million (£104.2 million, $163.5 million). Gloria Jeans has over 1000 coffee shops in 39 nations including Greece, Czech Republic, Turkey and Ukraine, as well as one shop in Alfreton, UK.  Iranian – Australian Nabi Saleh is now Chief Executive of Gloria Jeans and resides in Australia.

7. Coffee Republic

Founded by sister and brother team Bobby and Sahar Nashemi in 1995, Coffee Republic is headquartered in London.  By 1997 the company expanded to seven outlets in the capital, with shops in Manchester and Newcastle. In 2014 Coffee Republic had 72 shops in 11 countries including Turkey, Romania and Bulgaria as well as 98 concessions in outlets such as Greene King, Travelodge and Cineworld. Coffee Republic's Chief Executive is Tariq Affara.

6. McCafe

McCafe is a McDonald's owned coffee chain founded in Melbourne, Australia in1993. In 2001 the coffee shop group opened their first US outlet in Chicago, and within ten years the company had grown to become the largest coffee chain in New Zealand and Australia. In a little over ten years the company has grown to 1300 outlets worldwide, including shops in Bulgaria, Spain and Ukraine. James A Skinner is the Chief Executive of McCafe.

5. Caffè Ritazza

Owned by SSP, Caffè Ritazza has 42 outlets in the United Kingdom and 119 across 21 countries including Austria, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.  The coffee chain tends to concentrate its efforts on transport hubs and is mostly based at train stations and airports.  Caffè Ritazza outlets are also to be found at universities, hospitals and Asda Living stores.  Kate Swann is the CEO of SSP who are also the parent of Upper Crust and Millies Cookies, and runs 74 Starbucks outlets in the UK, Spain, France, Germany and Switzerland.

4. Dunkin Donuts

The global coffeehouse chain and doughnut retailer was founded by William Rosenberg in Canton, Massachussets, in 1950. With over 11,000 outlets in 33 countries, Dunkin Donuts are considered one of Starbucks main rivals. In Europe, Dunkin Donuts have a presence in Austria, Germany, Luxembourg, Georgia, Russia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Chief Executive is Nigel Travis and the company has a market capitalisation of €3.8 billion (£3.1 billion, $4.5 billion).

3. Caffè Nero

Founded in London in 1990 by Ian Semp, Caffè Nero now has 600 outlets UK wide. Headquartered in the capital, the company also has shops in Cyprus, Poland, Turkey and Ireland as well as the Middle East and United States. Nero Express operates in train stations while Caffè Nero outlets can also be found in some House of Fraser stores, Waterstones and airports. Listed on the London Stock Exchange in 2001 before reverting back to private status in 2007, the Chief Executive is Dr Gerry Ford.

2. Costa Coffee

Winning the best coffee chain in Europe for the fourth year running at the 2014 European Coffee Awards, Costa Coffee are now the biggest outlet in the UK, and second in the world. Owned by Whitbread, who also own Premier Inn and Brewer's Fayre, the company was founded in London in 1971 by brothers Sergio and Bruno Costa. Now listed on the FTSE 100, the company has 2,861 Costa Coffee shops in 30 countries (1,755 in the UK). Chris Rodgers is Managing Director.

1. Starbucks

The king of all coffee chains is headquartered in Seattle, Washington. Starbucks took their name from a 30 year-old Quaker chief mate from Nantucket, one of the characters Herman Melville's epic tale, Moby Dick. Founded by Jerry Baldwin, Zev Siegl and Gordon Bowker in Seattle in 1971, the coffee chain was taken over by Howard Schultz (a former employee) in 1987. Schultz now heads the company as Chief Executive, President and Chairman.  In 1992 Starbucks, with 140 outlets, was floated on the stock market with a valuation of €216.8 million (£172 million, $271 million) (now valued at €40.8 billion (£32.4 billion, $51 billion). Starbucks is now a global brand with an amazing 23,187 outlets in 64 countries.

Like what you see! Signup for our weekly newsletter