Starbucks Tests Delivery With UberEats

The chain began the trial at more than 100 stores in Miami.

September 14, 2018

MIAMI – More than a hundred Miami Starbucks stores are testing delivery via UberEats, Bloomberg reports. The coffee chain had dabbled in delivery before, most recently in tests with Postmates at some Seattle locations and from the Empire State Building store in New York City. Starbucks ended these trials without expanding the service.

Now, Starbucks is doing a larger delivery pilot with UberEats, which has been used by McDonald’s and Firehouse Subs. “Delivery is very hard, especially for [Starbucks’] products,” said analyst Peter Saleh with BTIG LLC. “The consumer is going to want their iced drinks cold, and they’re going to want their hot drinks hot. You’ve got to get it to the consumer quickly and that’s not easy.”

From grocery stores to restaurants, more companies are hopping on the delivery bandwagon. “Almost every restaurant basically has to get involved in one way or another,” Saleh said. “But it’s not necessarily a winning proposition.”

Lately, the coffee chain has had slow growth in U.S. sales, with the company announcing the closure of around 150 company-operated locations. Starbucks also has partnered with Alibaba to increase delivery in China. A successful test at 150 Starbucks locations in Shanghai and Beijing will be expanded to more than 2,000 units within three months.