Why Coffee Chains are Bouncing Back and Can Still Grow

The global coffee shop market is experiencing a resurgence, leaving behind the dramatic times of the pandemic. What are the key drivers of this recovery? Certainly, the restoration of normal social interaction, with the elimination of distancing and protective measures, plays a significant role.

Also, the return to in-person work in many service areas contributes to this rebound. However, there are other driving factors as well. According to a recent Rabobank report based on Euromonitor data, the coffee shop sector is evolving, embracing new dynamics. This evolution often favors large chains at the expense of independent operators.

In terms of sales, growth has resumed at rates comparable to the pre-pandemic period. The trend in the USA aligns with global patterns and is in line with robust results in detail.

Western Europe experienced a much more pronounced decline in coffee shop sales during the worst period of the pandemic, followed by a strong recovery that brought levels slightly higher than pre-pandemic ones, albeit marginally. The trend in detail, however, is weaker.

The recovery in the United States is not solely due to the return to offices, which has been only partial, but also to the resilience of operators who have relocated many venues to residential areas and adapted formats and offerings to new lifestyles and rhythms. It is essential to underline that the pandemic has claimed more victims among independent operators and smaller companies.

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