UK-based Costa Coffee, one of the largest global coffee chains, today opened its outlet here, which is the 119th in India and first in Kerala.
The store was formally inaugurated by British Deputy High Commissioner at Chennai, Bharat Joshi at the Lulu Mall.
CEO Costa Coffee, India, Santosh Unni, told reporters that the brand was looking at opening 300 outlets in India by 2015-16. "We open 20-35 outlets every year," he said, adding, another four outlets in Kochi are in the offing.
"We have identified some centres like Kakkanad, Panampilly Nagar and are currently in talks with the landlords," he said.
After Bangalore and Chennai, the coffee chain was coming to Kochi.
The firm's focus will be in emerging markets like China, South East Asia and India in the coming years.
The company was the first international coffee chain to set up business in India in September 2005 partnering with Devyani International Ltd (DIL) which has a large footprint in the retail food and beverages business in the country.
"We are just scratching the surface, the opportunity in India is huge," Judd Williams, Director, Middle East, India and South East Asia, Costa Coffee.
Costa at present has 2,800 stores globally and is opening 350 stores a year. In the last 12 months, the company has opened stores in Spain, France, Thailand and Cambodia. China has 300 outlets and there are plans to open more, he said.
Among the fastest growing coffee chains globally, Costa has plans to touch around 4,000 stores by 2015-16 with new stores in China, South East Asia and India. Much of this growth will come from the brands expansion in the emerging markets like China, Russia, North Africa and India, he said.