Starbucks profit climbs 25 per cent on stronger sales, lifts forecast

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Starbucks says its profit climbed 25 per cent in the quarter as caffeine-addicted customers helped boost sales and its coffee costs eased.

The results topped Wall Street expectations, and the company raised its full-year guidance. Starbucks' shares were up almost 7 per cent in aftermarket trading.

The Seattle-based chain, which has more than 19,000 locations around the world, said global sales rose 8 per cent at cafes open at least 13 months, with all regions registering growth. In its flagship U.S. market, the figure rose 9 per cent.

Starbucks meanwhile has been tweaking the products in its cafes to boost sales. In April, it rolled out revamped sandwiches in new packaging that come with slightly higher prices; the new egg salad sandwich, for example, costs $5.25, up from $5.15 previously.

New salads and grain bowls were also introduced at about $7 per box.

Moving forward, the company has been testing new baked goods — acknowledging that its baked goods don't have a great reputation. It also announced that it's teaming up with Danone to jump into the yogurt business, with new Greek yogurt parfaits planned for cafes by next year.

For the quarter, Starbucks Corp. earned $417.8 million, or 55 cents per share. That's up from $333.1 million, or 43 cents per share, a year ago.

Analysts on average expected 53 cents per share.

Revenue rose to $3.74 billion, more than the $3.72 billion analysts had forecast.

It now expects earnings per share in the range of $2.22 to $2.23, up from $2.12 to $2.18.

Its shares rose to $72.30, after closing up 2 per cent at $68.17.