Covid-19 and ban on drinking-in have not stopped coffee craze in South Korea, with Starbucks responsible for half of every cup sold in the country last year based on credit card settlements.
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According to data from app market researcher Wise App released on 24th March, Koreans aged 20 or older spent US$1.8 billion by credit or debit cards at Starbucks Korea.
The American coffee franchise where cash acceptance takes up less than 5 percent made up 52.6 percent of total plastic-based sales of US$3.4 billion at seven major café chains last year.
Its card sales at over 1,500 stores were nearly four times that of A Twosome Place Co., a local brand with a comparable number of stores of about 1,400, which came in second with US$500.5 million.
Ediya Coffee earned US$474.2 million, Mega Coffee US$246.8 million, Hollys Coffee US$167.5 million, Paikdabang US$139.1 million and Pascucci US120.6 million.
The average amount spent by one customer was also the highest at Starbucks Korea. About 7.09 million customers swiped cards at Starbucks each month, each of whom spending US$23.89 on average.
The country’s No. 1 coffeehouse chain racked up US$1.7 billion in annual sales last year, nearly a ten-fold increase from a decade ago. This year, it looks to top the US$1.7 billion milestone.
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Shinsegae Group is out to take over the remaining 50 percent stake from Starbucks headquarters in the U.S. to fully own the Korean operation.
Koreans are third biggest coffee drinkers after Americans and Chinese. A Korean drinks 353 cups a year, nearly tripling global average of 132.
(Source: Pulse News)