Starbucks will currently remain the only licensed premium coffee brand for the Keurig and Vue coffee platforms, however with a new agreement made with Green Mountain Coffee they will also be soon offering Teavana, Seattle’s Best, Torrefazione Italia, and Starbucks cocoa k-cups as well.
Howard Schulz, CEO and chairman at Starbucks, stated that Starbucks k-cup packs had an increase in sales of 75% compared to the previous year in March. He states in an interview with CNBC:
“The new agreement also affords us the opportunity to expand our successful K-Cup and Vue pack portfolio of products and brands beyond North America and to market them on a truly global scale over time. We’re going to do everything we can to promote the Keurig system and obviously Starbucks K-Cups and this is going to be a significantly lucrative deal for both companies,”
CEO of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Brian Kelley, also said in the same interview with CNBC that “this partnership with Starbucks is really a terrific thing for our business.”
Patents that Green Mountain held for the k-cup expired in September of 2012. This in turn has allowed other companies and producers to come forward with their own machines and pods. This did not disclude Starbucks, as they launched their own machine, the Verismo, last year.