Starbucks is expanding its empire to the single-cup coffee maker market.
The company announced March 8 that it would launch sales of an at-home premium single cup machine in the fall. The new Verismo will brew espresso, lattes and coffee.
Starbucks says the machine features Swiss engineering and a patent-pending high pressure extraction capability and will use a variety of coffee and milk pods.
"The premium single-cup segment is the fastest-growing business within the global coffee industry," said Howard Schultz, Starbucks chairman, president and ceo. "We have long believed that the biggest prize within the segment is a high-pressure system that would give us the opportunity to deliver Starbucks-quality espresso beverages at home and at work for customers who desire the Starbucks espresso experience outside of our stores."
Verismo will be available online and at select Starbucks retail stores, as well as specialty retailers. Espresso and brewed coffee pods will be available in a range of Starbucks roasts, along with a variety of milk pods.
Starbucks entered the premium single-cup market with Starbucks VIA Ready Brew instant coffee in 2009 and extended its presence by teaming with with Green Mountain Coffee Roasters to provide Starbucks K-Cups for the popular Keurig machines last fall. (Starbucks will continue to make K-Cups for Green Mountain Coffee Roasters.)
"We now have the opportunity to reach millions of customers who have been looking and waiting for a uniquely Starbucks solution in the fast-growing premium single cup coffee market with a coffee quality, taste, roast variety and design sensibility that is consistent with Starbucks brand and reputation," said Jeff Hansberry, president, Channel Development for Starbucks.
Pricing, availability and retail distribution will be announced closer to launch. Information: www.starbucks.com/verismo.