News Paper seller to an entrepreneur, the chairman, president and CEO of Starbucks Coffee Company, which is well-known as one of the largest coffee store chains of the world, story of Howard Schultz is inspiration for all small-town youth to achieve big in life.
The Struggles of The Past
Howard Schultz born on July 19, 1953, in Brooklyn, New York. Howard’s father Fred Schultz was a truck driver, and mother Elaine was housewife.
Howard had 2 siblings and they lived in low income housing society, Income of his father used to be very less with which it was difficult to manage the monthly expenses of 5 in the family.
Howard spent entire childhood in the low-income housing society, being from poor background he had seen hardship in his family, his life took a sharp turn when his father met with an accident in his workplace and broke his leg.
Howard’s family situation became even more difficult as his father could not continue his work and also had no medical insurance, entire family responsibility was on shoulder of 12 years old Howard Schultz.
Howard Schultz as Newspaper seller.
Howard decided to take responsibility of his family and decided to search job. He got his first job which was selling newspapers, at very young age of 12 he started selling Newspaper to support his family. Few days after selling Newspaper he started working in a local cafe.
He started to work in fur store, where he had to work on stretching leather. This Job was very hard for young 16-year-old Howard Schultz. The experience of working in leather industry helped him getting physically strong and this helped him getting a seat in Northern Michigan University on sports quota, He finished his Bachelor’s degree in Communications from Northern Michigan University in 1975.
Howard Schultz in Xerox.
Howard after completing his graduation joined as sales manager at Xerox, after spending three years in Xerox he joined a Swedish company called Hamamaplast where his role was selling home appliances like coffee grinders to businesses including Starbucks.
Howard Schultz found an interesting thing that Starbucks being a little company used to purchase coffee machines more than any other popular stores., this led Howard to meet the owners of Starbucks and he decided to go Seattle and meet them.
Howard when visited Starbucks found that they had a credo which made it a popular store in the region. Starbucks used to teach the customers the art of making coffee. This innovative feature impressed Howard he decided to work in such kind of innovative start-up.
Howard started to approach Jerry Baldwin, director of Starbucks for job through phone calls, because of repeated pressure from Howard, Jerry Baldwin offered him a role of marketing director at Starbucks with a salary which was half of what he was getting at Hamamaplast.
Howard Schultz and Starbucks
Howards journey in Starbucks was impressive, he worked more on innovative and focussed much on customer satisfaction.
In April 1986, Schultz opened a coffee shop in Seattle. He gave it an Italian name of ‘Il Giornale,’. It was a great success where 300 people visited it during its first working day.
One year after he started his own coffee shop, Howard heard that the owners of Starbucks decided to sell their stores, the roasting factory, and brand, as they could not manage the functioning of the large company.
Starbucks owner announced price of $4 million, hearing this Howard Schultz went to creditors and requested them for loan, many people invested in early days including founder of Microsoft Bill Gates.
The journey of Howard in Starbucks as CEO was progressive, he expanded the business across the US in small time, Starbucks became a household name in US.
It was in 1996, Howard Schultz, as the Chairman of the Member Board, CEO, and co-owner of Starbucks, decided to expand his company outside the United States. He started his vision by starting his first company in Japan. Then, he started to expand his business in Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Sweden, and Israel.
In just four years ie., by 2000, Starbucks was established in more than 2,400 places in the United States and 350 stores in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Canada opened.
Howard Schultz decided to hire refugees.
There are more than 65 million people identified by United Nations Refugee Agency as being forcibly displaced and more than 21 million of those are refugees. Howard’s decision surprised many in US when he announced that Starbucks will hire 10,000 refugees in next 5 years.
Howard Schultz now Executive Chairman.
On December 01, 2016, CEO Howard Schultz announced that he would step down next year but he will serve as the Executive Chairman and Kevin Johnson, the company’s current President, and COO will be appointed as the CEO on April 03, 2017.
You may also like: Refugee to founder of WhatsApp
Howard Schultz net worth
Today, Howard Schultz net worth is of about US$2.2 billion. He wrote two books in which he told the story of his own life.
In 2015, the company’s revenue was US$19.16 billion, net income – US$2.76 billion. The total headcount network comprised over 238,000 people as of 2016. As of June 9, 2016, 24,464 Starbucks stores are operating in 72 countries.