Burst your Babble

Can’t beat Starbucks: Robina Gokongwei shuts down Costa Coffee rather than brew more losses

The world’s second biggest coffee chain, Costa Coffee, has bowed out of the Philippines.

The world’s second biggest coffee chain, Costa Coffee, has bowed out of the Philippines.

The self-styled Starbucks killer just couldn’t pry Filipinos away from their favorite brew since bilyonaryo Robina Gokongwei-Pe established the British chain’s first store at Eastwood Mall in Quezon City in 2015.

Costa Coffee, the first foray of Robinsons Retail Holdings Inc. in food retail, had 15 branches before it was shuttered in the middle of 2019.

A Babbler said Gokonwei-Pe opted to pull the plug on Costa Coffee rather than lose more money.

Among RRHI’s portfolio of specialty stores, Costa Coffee was probably the easiest to let go among its 376 specialty stores such as Daiso, Toys”R” Us, Topshop, Robinsons Appliances and Shiseido.

Same store sales of RRHI’s specialty stores dropped 1.5 percent in 2019 due to rising competition and store closures.

Analysts noted that except for drug store segment (The Generics Pharmacy and South Star Drug) which grew 12 percent in sales last year, RRHI’s DIY or do-it-yourself (True Value and Handyman), convenience (Ministop), and department stores continue to disappoint.

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