Starbucks sinks after announcing a weaker-than-expected sales forecast and plans to close over 100 stores next year

  • Starbucks shares fell in after-hours trading Tuesday after the coffee chain’s same-store sales forecast for the third quarter missed forecasts.
  • Starbucks announced plans to close over 100 underperforming stores in locations where it already has a strong presence.
  • The former Chairman Howard Schultz stepped down earlier in June.
  • Watch Starbucks trade in real time here.

Starbucks shares fell by as much as 5% in after-hours trading Tuesday after the company announced a third-quarter sales forecast that was weaker than analysts had expected.

Global same-store sales, at locations open for at least one year, were projected to rise 1%, weaker than the forecast for 2.9% growth according to Bloomberg.

Starbucks also announced a number of strategic changes. Notably, as from 2019, it plans to shift its focus for new stores away from areas where it already has a strong presence and to underserved markets. The company plans to close about 150 underperforming locations in 2019, up from its average pace of up to 50 closures every year, the company said.

“We must move faster to address the more rapidly changing preferences and needs of our customers,” Kevin Johnson, Starbucks’ CEO, said in a statement.

Through 2020, Starbucks expects to return about $US25 billion in cash to shareholders through buybacks and dividends, a $US10 billion increase from its previously announced target.

Earlier this month, Howard Schultz stepped down as chairman amid reports that he was considering a run for president in 2020.

Starbucks shares are virtually unchanged for the year.

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