23.5 Degrees opens 80th Starbucks store in just eight years

The first UK Starbucks franchisee, 23.5 Degrees, has opened its 80th Starbucks outlet in King’s Lynn, Norfolk as part of its ongoing expansion programme to reach 300 stores by 2027.

Mark Hepburn, managing director of 23.5 Degrees, said: “The last year has been challenging but opening this Starbucks store demonstrates our commitment to our ambitious growth plans.

“We could not have achieved our success without our investors, contractors and Starbucks itself. Most importantly, I’d like to thank our partners who have delivered day in day out to ensure we continue to serve our customers and build the business.”

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, 23.5 Degrees reports that it opened seven drive through stores last year, stretching from Canvey Island in Essex to Peterlee in County Durham, as the business targets 100 stores by March 2022.

23.5 Degrees says it is actively seeking both freehold and leasehold drive through opportunities on main arterial routes, close to major retail destinations or on large industrial estates. Locations should also be a suitable design for its three standard sized units of 1,500, 1,800 and 2,200 sq. ft. The company says it will also consider high street units in prominent footfall locations with a minimum size of 1,500 sq. ft.

Hepburn added: “We’re able to move fast on great new sites. Our use of modular design and build enables our landlords to have our stores trading faster. We’re keeping our foot on the gas and plan to reach 300 stores in the next six years.”

23.5 Degrees opened its first Starbucks store in Liphook, Hampshire, in February 2013 and reports that it has invested more than £28m in the UK economy to date through building and buying stores. The company says it employs more than 1,300 and has a track record of developing its people, as many current managers and area managers started out as baristas. The new King’s Lynn store, the first Starbucks drive through in the town, will create 25 jobs for the local community.