Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson announced Wednesday that he will be retiring effective April 4, 2022, and will provide transition services to the company until the end of 2022. Starbucks founder and former CEO Howard Schultz will serve as interim president and CEO and member of the board until a long-term replacement is found.
“A year ago, I signaled to the Board that as the global pandemic neared an end, I would be considering retirement from Starbucks,” Johnson said in a statement. “I feel this is a natural bookend to my 13 years with the company. As I make this transition, we are very fortunate to have a founder who is able to step in on an interim basis, giving the board time to further explore potential candidates and make the right long-term succession decision for the company. I have enjoyed every minute of the job and am proud of what we have achieved together. It has been an honor to serve the 400,000 Starbucks green apron partners around the world and I want to thank them for their service, resilience and optimism.”
During his tenure as Starbucks CEO over the past five years, he helped grow the company and established the “people positive, planet positive and profit positive” culture paradigm that Starbucks has become known for.
Schultz is volunteering as interim CEO and will receive a base salary of $1 and will be on the Starbucks’ benefits plan but will not receive any other compensation or benefits during his tenure as interim CEO and president. He will also be focusing on an “innovation framework” and onboarding the next CEO.
“Our success is not an entitlement,” Schultz said in a statement. “We must continue to earn the trust of our people and our customers every day by how we deliver the Starbucks experience, how we treat each other and how we act as a responsible community member and corporate citizen. With the backdrop of COVID recovery and global unrest, its critical we set the table for a courageous reimagining and reinvention of the future Starbucks experience for our partners and customers.”
Starbucks will provide more information and updates in Wednesday’s shareholders meeting.
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