17Starbucks: Using Artificial Intelligence To Sell Millions Of Coffees Every Day

Starbucks has close to 30,0001 outlets around the world and serves up around 4 billion cups of coffee annually.

It isn't just simple coffees though – from a classic espresso to an iced caramel mochaccino there are actually around 87,0002 combinations available on a typical Starbucks menu!

Although the brand has long been a market leader in the United States where it was founded, in the mid-1990s it began expanding overseas into markets where it often faced strong competition from local chains. As of 2018 its biggest non-domestic market is China, where 12.4% of its branches are now located.3

The way coffee and tea – which make up the majority of Starbucks sales – are consumed varies across cultures. The coffee shop giant generates and burns through mountains of transactional and customer data in its attempt to offer personalized service to millions.

What Problems Is Artificial Intelligence Helping To Solve?

With so many stores offering so many products in so many parts of the world, precise calculations must be made to keep the thousands of outlets stocked and ready to serve their customers. Slight miscalculations can mean large overspends on logistics such as transport and storage. With businesses as large and broadly distributed as Starbucks, small inefficiencies very quickly add up to large ones.

Operating internationally, Starbucks is often competing with local chains and brands that are ...

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