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On Wednesday, Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX ) dropped a bombshell. Far from having reached a point where, apocryphally, Starbucks was so overbuilt that it had to "open a Starbucks in the bathrooms of existing Starbucks," the company actually has quite a bit of room left to grow. And it is growing. This morning, the world's biggest coffeehouse announced a series of new initiatives, including a plan to open more than 3,000 new stores in the "Americas" region over the course of the next five years.
Of these, about half are expected to be built in the U.S. proper, where revenue is still growing at an annual rate of 9%. The company also plans to renovate "thousands more stores" in the United States.
Elsewhere on the globe, Chief Executive Officer Howard Schultz told attendees at the company's 2012 Investor Conference that "Starbucks will have more than 20,000 retail stores on six continents by 2014 and more than 200,000 points of global CPG distribution by 2015." By the end of next year, Starbucks plans to have 1,000 stores in Mainland China (and 1,500 by 2015), 1,000 more in Japan, 500 in South Korea, and its first store in Vietnam. In addition, three stores are now operating in India, with a new store set to open in Delhi early next year.
Regardless of the good news, Starbucks shares ended the day down more than 1.5%.