Outgoing Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz struck a conciliatory tone over the election of Donald Trump in an interview with CNBC’s Squawk Box on Friday morning.
Schultz was a vocal supporter of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton during the campaign and said he was “stunned” by the election of Trump in a letter to employees the day after the election. He also stepped down as CEO of Starbucks on Wednesday, transitioning to Executive Chairman.
“I don’t think of any level that Starbucks or the brand is at odds with Trump or his supporters,” said Schultz. “We feel very strongly as a company is to demonstrate a level of social impact to the community that we serve.”
Due to Schultz’s support of Clinton, there have been a number of protests against Starbucks including customers asking for Trump’s name to be written on their cups.
“We have been concerned with a number of social issues that have not been addressed by Republicans in the past, but we hope that the new administration will address them,” Schultz told CNBC.
Throughout the line of questioning, Schultz expressed optimism for the new administration saying “we all want the president-elect to do well.”
Additionally, Schultz was asked about the recent rally in stocks since the election of Trump as the market prices in possible tax cuts for corporations and fiscal stimulus from the administration.
“I need to separate the stock of Starbucks from the Trump administration and the rest of the stock market.” said Schultz, saying that the unique value of Starbucks had driven the company’s post-election surge.
Finally, Schultz was asked by CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin if he was panning a run for office as some have speculated he might following his change in roles.
“I am all in at Starbucks and that is my focus at this time,” replied Schultz.
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