On February 12, China’s “new retail” coffee chain, luckin coffee (luckin), announced plans to enter 18 additional Chinese cities including Shijiazhuang, Shenyang, Guiyang, and Zhuhai by the end of April. Counting the 22 cities in which luckin opened coffee shops last year, the coffee chain is expected to operate in a total of 40 cities nationwide this year.
In early January 2019, luckin announced three goals for the year: first, to open more than 2,500 new shops, thus pushing the total number of coffee shops of 4,500 by the end of the year; second, to become China’s largest coffee chain brand by number of shops and sales volume in cups of coffee; third, to provide professionally crafted coffee with high quality, high value to cost and convenient products. Luckin’s expansion into 18 new cities marks an important step towards achieving its 2019 goal.
Luckin just kicked off operations in the three Chinese cities of Changzhou, Foshan and Yangzhou in January. Before the end of April this year, luckin will launch in 15 additional large and medium-sized cities: Nantong, Wenzhou, Jiaxing, Shenyang, Shaoxing, Kunming, Hefei, Quanzhou, Zhuhai, Guiyang, Nanchang, Zhenjiang, Zhongshan, Taiyuan, and Shijiazhuang. The company considers these cities at the forefront of the country in terms of population size and consumption power, as well as in the popularization of coffee culture. The company said it already started preparations to expand into these cities.
“We will continue to work hard to make it possible for Chinese consumers to drink a cup of coffee anytime, anywhere and conveniently with leisure. We aim to make coffee a part of the daily consumption of Chinese people, instead of luxury spending intended to flaunt social status,” said Luckin’s founder and CEO Qian Zhiya while winning “Rising Star Award of 2018 Economic Personages of China“, an event co-organized by People’s Daily, news portal Sina Finance, and Wu Xiaobo Channel on January 18th of this year.
Luckin coffee is headquartered in Xiamen in Southeast China and started its pilot launch in January, 2018. By the end of 2018, it has opened 2,073 stores in 22 major cities across China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, with 12.5 million customers and 89.7 million cups sold. Luckin has achieved its “500-meters coverage” layout in downtown Beijing and Shanghai, meaning customers can now walk to Luckin’s stores within five minutes. In December 2018, luckin’s coffee beans won the gold medal at the International Coffee Tasting 2018, organized by the International Institute of Coffee Tasters (Iiac), in Milan, Italy.
(Top photo from Baidu)