Will Green Mountain's First Keurig Store Be Its Last?

If you made a trip to your local shopping mall, would a dedicated Keurig Store make the agenda? The folks at Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (NASDAQ: GMCR  ) sure hope so.

On Tuesday, Green Mountain stock rose around 2% after the company announced the launch of its first brick-and-mortar Keurig Store, calling it "a unique retail destination offering consumers the opportunity to experience the leading single cup system like never before."

That's a lot of fanfare for a store concept exclusively focused on promoting the company's various single-serve brewers, but I still can't help but wonder whether Green Mountain's first Keurig Store will prove to be its last.

Here's why this is a great idea
To its credit, Green Mountain is being cautious with its first location, based within a mile of its major research and development centers in Burlington, Massachusetts. This, in turn, makes it an ideal place to showcase Green Mountain's latest systems and flavors to skeptical consumers. Incidentally, that list grew to include instant soup less than two weeks ago, thanks to a newly minted partnership with Campbell Soup (NYSE: CPB  ) .

As fellow Fool Rick Munarriz pointed at the time, people shouldn't be particularly surprised by the partnership, considering Campbell's teamed up with SodaStream (NASDAQ: SODA  ) last year to get its V-8 V-Fusion and V8 Splash beverages into the at-home carbonation specialist's increasingly popular machines.

Then again, the V8 V-Fusion and V8 Spash lines both come in a variety of relatively sweet-tasting flavors, so SodaStream's efforts there were more-or-less complementary to its existing soda and tea options.

With Green Mountain, however, I'm sure I'm not the only Keurig user made apprehensive by the possibility of being surprised with salty coffee for breakfast from the lingering after-effects of a Campbell's Soup K-Cup.

But would millions of consumers be more likely to explore the possibility if we could try a sample in a showroom before wasting our money buying an 18-pack? Absolutely.

And the same goes for the company's new beverage systems, including the Keurig Rivo, which was launched last November and, in typical Green Mountain fashion, claims to simplify the process of making delicious lattes and cappuccinos.


Green Mountain Coffee Roaster's Keurig Rivo, Image source: Green Mountain

What's more, as today's press release also points out, in-store customers will be able to mix and match from 200 possible flavors to brew later at home, with custom packages available in three-count, six-count, or 12-count boxes.

In the end, I have to admit I might be just a little jealous of the lucky folks in Burlington. This creative flexibility is one big reason I'm convinced the first Keurig Store most certainly won't be the last, and why the concept should only help to further propel Green Mountain stock upward over the long term.

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