Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson on Wednesday defended the company’s share buyback program as the coronavirus pandemic roils the restaurant industry.
“We’re being thoughtful and responsible,” Johnson said in a interview with Jim Cramer on CNBC’s “Mad Money.” “Look, we’ve got a strong balance sheet, BBB investment credit rating. If you look at our last earnings call, we had $3 billion of cash on the balance sheet; we’ve got a $3 billion line of revolving credit.”
The global coffee chain announced on Wednesday that its board had authorized the repurchase of up to 40 million shares through the end of fiscal 2021. An existing authorization allows Starbucks to repurchase an additional 16 million shares. Johnson said the approval is “nothing above and beyond” its usual share buyback program.