Russia | Stars Coffee replaces American Starbucks in Moscow

(Moscow) Stars Coffee, a Russian chain that came to replace the American coffee giant Starbucks in Russia after its departure due to the Ukrainian conflict, opened its first restaurant in Moscow on Friday for the general public with the slogan “Bucks is gone, the stars are remained”.

Posted at 6:34 a.m.

“Why STARS? Because the new brand brings together the stars of the gastronomic industry,” explained Russian rapper Timati and restaurateur Anton Pinski in a press release, who acquired Starbucks’ 130 restaurants in Russia at the end of July.

Brown has been added to the logo with the traditional colors of the American chain – green and white – and the little mermaid has been replaced by a girl in a “kokochnik”, a traditional Russian headdress.


PHOTO MAXIM SHEMETOV, REUTERS

Syrups for coffee will now be locally made, while the menu of dishes and desserts will be completely redesigned by new chefs to offer a quality “better than ever”, assures Stars Coffee in a press release.

Unlike the “Russian McDonald’s” launched in June with great fanfare, Stars Coffee did not make a big advertising campaign for the opening of its first restaurant on Novy Arbat street, in the center of the Russian capital.

A modest official ceremony took place on Thursday evening for a few celebrities and a handful of journalists, with the general public being invited from Friday.

All of the chain’s restaurants are due to open in Russia by the end of September, according to the owners.

About 80% of the approximately 2,000 employees who worked for Starbucks have agreed to stay with the new chain, according to the same source.


PHOTO MAXIM SHEMETOV, REUTERS

Starbucks, which had temporarily closed the 130 establishments bearing its name in Russia after the start of the Russian offensive in Ukraine on February 24, announced at the end of May that it had made the decision to leave the country definitively.

The American chain known for its “latte” and “frappuccino” opened its first cafe in Russia in 2007 and operated there through a partner, a Kuwaiti group that owned and managed the licensed establishments.

After the start of the Russian offensive in Ukraine and the imposition of economic sanctions, major Western companies found themselves under great pressure to distance themselves from Moscow, for ethical reasons or difficulties in doing business.

After more than 30 years of presence in Russia and with nearly 850 restaurants and 62,000 employees, McDonald’s thus announced in mid-May its definitive departure from the country and sold its activities, but not the brand name, to a man of Russian business.

On June 12, “Russian McDonald’s” opened under the name “Vkousno i totchka” (Delicious. Period).

The French car manufacturer Renault, leader in the country with the Lada brand which it had recovered, for its part sold its assets to the Russian State.

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