Starbucks has partnered with Meituan to boost its delivery and online services in China.
Customers buying through Meituan’s app in China will have more customisation possibilities, according to the coffee giant. Members of Starbucks Rewards, the company’s customer loyalty programme, will get the same perks via the Meituan app as they would from the standard Starbucks app in China.
Starbucks also announced that its Starbucks Reserve line of coffees, which it touts as a premium product, is making its “delivery debut” in China.
More offline experiences have been developed in collaboration between the two firms.
Users may rent sections in certain businesses in China for private gatherings or sign up for any activities hosted by a local shop using Meituan’s app. Starbucks claimed this service is now available in 60 outlets in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Chengdu, with plans to expand further.
Customers can also schedule workshops for coffee sampling. By the end of the year, each of Starbucks’ roughly 5,000 outlets in China will have its own page on the food delivery service, thanks to a new feature on Meituan. Users will be able to purchase coffee and search for upcoming events and activities in their area.
With over 660 million active users, Meituan is China’s most popular meal delivery network, providing Starbucks with a potentially larger audience. Smartphone consumers in China prefer to utilise so-called “super applications,” which combine many services into one. One such app is Meituan.
Starbucks’ collaboration with Meituan comes as the company confronts greater competition from domestic competitors in its largest market outside of the United States. Tea-based startups like HeyTea and local coffee shops like Manner are gaining traction and receiving a lot of funding.