The coffee chain has joined a global investment team including Milan-based Angel Lab and European group Pekepan Investments and will aim to expand the Princi chain worldwide.
Princi is known for producing wood-fired breads created from traditional family recipes, and operates five locations – four in Milan and one in London.
Starbucks has also become global licensee for Princi, which will be exclusive food supplier at the upcoming Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Rooms in Shanghai and New York.
Announced earlier this year and on track to open in Shanghai next year and New York in 2018, these are described as “immersive coffee experiences bringing to life Starbucks’ line of premium, small lot Reserve coffees in a retail space that allows the roasting, brewing and craft of coffee to take center stage.”
Baking in stores for first time
Starbucks chairman and CEO Howard Schultz said the deal would mean the business would be baking in its stores for the first time since the business was founded in 1971.
He added that Princi founder Rocco Princi has a “passion for handcrafted food and artisanal baked goods that mirrors how I feel about our coffee.”
“The attention to detail, the care invested in selecting the ingredients and the artistry of preparation are second only to the service Rocco offers customers inside his Princi stores. I can think of no better pairing for our most premium coffee experience,” Schultz said.
Rocco Princi said opening the London site, his first outside Milan, made him realize what he could offer an international clientele.
“I have long admired Starbucks, the values Howard has embedded into his organization, and we are honored to be a part of bringing to life an entirely new retail environment with the Roasteries,” he added.
East Balt opens second Italian site
Chicago-based East Balt Bakeries, which operates 24 bakeries in 12 countries, has opened its second facility in Italy.
The purpose-built bakery in Rome, which is capable of producing standard and artisan bread products, will operate alongside East Balt’s Bomporto Italy bakery and supply quick-service restaurants and retail customers in the region.
“East Balt prides itself on being in lock-step with its global customers and will continue to invest in new facilities around the world,” said chief executive officer Mark Bendix. “Our new Rome Bakery is well positioned to the meet the growing demands of the Region."