Starbucks Adds New Director To Its Ranks As It Eyes China’s Growing Market

Joshua Cooper Ramo, 42, former journalist and executive with New York-based Kissinger Associates, has been elected to serve on Starbucks’ board of directors. He will sit on the coffee giant’s nominating and corporate governance committee.

Reportedly, this latest addition comes in light of Starbucks’ entry into the Asian market. Earlier this year, it launched operations throughout India, Asia’s third largest economy; and in April, the company said it was upping activity levels in mainland China. Roughly 750 of its 16,800 cafes are now located in the People’s Republic.

Ramo has been referred to as ‘one of China’s leading foreign-born scholars,’ by the World Economic Forum and has authored several papers on China’s growth, the company says. He is currently managing director of Kissinger Associates, a government relations and investment consulting firm founded by Henry Kissinger, the American politician and Nobel Peace Prize winner.

‘As we accelerate the growth of our international business, Joshua’s notable experience and perspective will complement our already strong and diverse board,’ says Howard Schultz, chairman, president and CEO of Starbucks. ‘His expertise, especially with regard to China, will be an invaluable contribution to maintaining our global leadership and strategic competitive advantage.’

Ramo holds degrees from the University of Chicago and New York University and has been a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, says Starbucks.

[Article by Aarti Maharaj, Corporate Secretary]