I edited this post for clarity and add in a picture.
I clicked on this last night and read THIS.
La Boulange is a Bay Area bakery that’s known for their french pastries. It’s really a lovely place to go. Now, this really lovely bakery is going national. I am both sad and optimistic for it.
Here’s why I am sad and optimistic:
1. It’s brought by Starbucks which used to be a small coffee house but now, a huge global presence. According to the Wikipedia page, it is the largest coffee house in the world and currently trading at NASDQ.
2. If we focus on the business front, Starbucks did a fine job of acquiring one the best bakeries around. A little biased perhaps. Totally. 🙂 Have you tasted some of Starbucks’ food? Meh. With this purchase, I think it will help to boost their sales and differentiate them into another segment of the market from your other coffee chains. Starbucks is positioning itself in the finer food segment and expanding itself beyond its coffee empire.
3. The fact that Starbucks is so much bigger than La Boulange may help boost confidence to the current LB’s workers that they may expect higher wages and better healthcare from their new employer.
From what we have seen and heard from Starbucks’ culture, they do seem to treat their employees right and give a fair salary + health benefits. However, with their over saturated presence on every corner in the world (practically), I don’t know if we should be too optomistic.
While I can’t say that I know how this deal will turn out as we are not privy to that information, we have some past experiences of other transactions we have seen from various’ other companies. We are not confident about #3. I have seen some mixed results in other companies where they did do (massive) restructure after a holding period. So good luck guys.
My main point on this post is not about the acquisition, nor about the employees future expectations though those certainly do affect with I am going to say. As a consumer, I am really focusing on the quality of the product.
I hope that by going national, La Boulange’s products will stay consistent in quality, so that all can enjoy these really good pastries. If done well (this is the optimistic part) I think this would be a great partnership because it does help branch Starbucks’ into the finer food sector and help La Boulange into the big time. Good luck.
(Why am I still sad?)