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Don’t Underestimate a Starbucks Challenger in China, Analyst Says


The contrast is stark: On the one hand there’s Starbucks , the global coffee giant, trying to bolster a coffee culture in China, opening stores that include 30,000-square-foot “experience” establishments. On the other, there’s digital- and delivery-focused Luckin, looking to compete with price and speed.

That contrast was on display this week with the news, reported by The Wall Street Journal, that the fast-growing Luckin continues to push against Starbucks’ plans in what the coffee giant sees as its most important growth market.

Luckin has raised $1 billion, and, according to The Journal, could go public this year with a U.S. listing, perhaps at a $3 billion valuation—roughly half ofDunkin Brands ’ (DNKN) market capitalization.

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