Starbucks is bringing its Branded Solutions, a program that brings the Starbucks’ experience from the stores and into businesses, to the Middle East, except of course, for Israel. During the conflict with Gaza, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz went out of his way to emphasize that Starbucks has absolutely no relationship whatsoever with Israel. However, he then tried to have it both ways by saying this had nothing to do with politics, as the few Starbucks locations that were in Israel around 2002 just didn’t pan out. Even if the lack of a Starbucks presence was due to coffee preferences of Israelis and not politics, the statement by Schultz that Starbucks had no Israeli connection certainly seemed to communicate that there would have been something somehow wrong with that.
Branded Solutions provides Starbucks kiosks and services in company cafeterias to allow workers and visitors to enjoy Starbucks without having to go to one of the company’s retail stores. Branded Solutions is available in offices, hotels, educational and healthcare locations in Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, Oman, KSA, Bahrain, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt.
Now ISIS can set up a coffee kiosk when they want to take a coffee break amid a full day of crucifixions, torture, rapes, beheadings, but the IDF has to somehow go on without Frappucino. Never mind. Some Israelis happen to prefer their own coffee.