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Tuesday, 21st January 2014
In Business In Japan,

Starbucks to conquer last Japanese prefecture

Few symbols are as ubiquitous and recognisable as the green and white mermaid symbol that heralds the entrance of a Starbucks coffee shop, and the brand will soon be everywhere in Japan as the company enters talks to open a shop in the  Tottori prefecture.

According to Japan Today, the region will have its first Starbucks in just over a year, with the residents able to get their first Frappuccino or White Chocolate Green Tea by March 2015.

Business commentators may be surprised to hear that a large segment of the nation went without a Starbucks for so long, considering the US hot beverage purveyor has conquered everywhere else.

Indeed, there is a particularly high concentration of the green and white decked coffee shops within the boundaries of the Shibuya district in Tokyo alone, with a grand total of ten surrounding its enormous train station.

However, it has been remarked that Starbuck's dominance over Tokyo appears somewhat stretched, with the Edogawa and Arakawa wards not having a single shop within their boundaries despite their sizable populations.

The coffee chain reached 1,000 stores across Japan in September last year, demonstrating the Japanese love for a good cup of US-style coffee.

Caffeine addicts looking to get their fix should try to visit the Starbucks opposite the Shibuya Crossing outside of the station, which is often cited as the busiest coffee shop in the entire world.

Thousands of coffee drinkers choose to sit opposite the window, watching as the lights turn red on the famous stretch of road and pedestrians spill out, crossing in an intricate dance that appears incredibly difficult to pull off.

Those seeking something more quintessentially Japanese should locate a kissaten, a tearoom that also serves Western-style coffee to those in need of a fix.

Written by Graham McPherson



Related news stories:
Starbucks to launch new coffee in Japan (4th March 2010)