Chai tea lovers will be thrilled to hear that Oprah Winfrey is teaming up with Starbucks coffee to create ‘Teavana Oprah Chai Tea’ which will be on sale from April 29 in Starbucks and Teavana stores across North America.
As if that wasn’t exciting enough news for Chai tea lovers, for every cup sold, Starbucks have pledged to make a donation to the Oprah Leadership Academy Foundation, an organisation which assists woman in South Africa to receive a proper education.
Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks, announced the new Chai tea collaboration to excited shareholders during the company’s annual general meeting. He said the new partnership was a huge step forward for the company which had acquired Teavana in 2012 for $620 million.
Schultz said: “With the introduction of Teavana Oprah Chai, we are going to elevate the tea experience in the same way we did for coffee.”
This is a first for Oprah Winfrey in terms of aligning herself with a specific product or brand. According to Oprah, previous brands offered to her for promotion simply weren’t the right fit for the TV host and chat show star.
“Starbucks is not just a coffee company… it’s about nurturing the human spirit. What my goal in life has been, what I suppose my brand has become, is nurturing the human spirit,” said Winfrey at the shareholder’s meeting.
It’s clear that the drive here is the amalgamation of Starbucks’ already popular brand alongside Oprah’s female-friendly, affordable-luxury and image.
The first Teavana Fine Teas + Tea Bar, which opened in New York City last October, stocks items in a slightly higher price-scale than Starbucks, such as lemongrass ginger rice balls and Shiitake mushroom and kale flatbreads.
Shareholders left the meeting with a certain spring in their step as they were all given a sample of Oprah’s Chai, and will obviously be looking forward to see what the introduction of the new product will achieve as far as increased income is concerned.
The good news for Starbucks already is that since last year’s company’s annual shareholders meeting, the chain hit record annual revenue of nearly $15 billion. It remains to be seen how successful the new ‘Teavana Oprah Chai Tea’ will be, and by how much it will increase last year’s record-breaking income for the coffee giant.