American multinational coffeehouse chain Starbucks has officially opened its first location in Guyana, in a move which is expected to challenge local cafes to up their games.
Located at Amazonia Mall, Providence, East Bank Demerara (EBD), this modern and vibrant outlet will officially open to the Guyanese public on Tuesday.
The franchise was brought to Guyana’s shores by Prestige Holdings Guyana Limited.
Speaking at the grand opening ceremony on Monday, President Dr. Irfaan Ali said the opening of this international franchise should encourage local coffeehouses to up their games.
“I do not see the arrival of Starbucks here as competition to our local coffee shop…it adds value, and that is what is important. We must understand that we live in a different Guyana and a different world, every brand is going to come. We have to improve, we have to get better, [and] we have to make our own brand and our own systems more efficient. That is what is important and global brands have the tendency of pushing local brands to up their game,” he stressed.
Moreover, the Head of State urged Starbucks to introduce some local cuisine items on its menu.
President Ali also spoke of the significance of this investment in the country, specifically, the service industry.
Meanwhile, the CEO of Prestige Holdings, Simon Harding shared that every Starbucks café partners with a local organisation within the community to “give back”.
“We have partnered with the Save Abee Foundation as our community partner for the first Starbucks at Amazonia mall. The Save Abee Foundation aims to improve the quality of life for children in Guyana by providing free lessons, medical outreach as well as community outreach programs,” Harding shared.
Starbucks is offering a wide array of options at prices that match the local market. Starbucks intends to open other locations across the country in the future.