March 5, 2020 / 10:27 PM / a month ago

Starbucks second-quarter same store sales in China to fall by about 50%

(Reuters) - Starbucks Corp (SBUX.O) said on Thursday it expects China sales in stores open for at least a year to fall by about 50% in the quarter ending March due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The world’s largest coffee chain said the impact of the epidemic could reduce its second-quarter revenue in China by $400 million to $430 million versus its prior expectations, and hurt its adjusted earnings per share by 15 cents to 18 cents.

"The estimate reflects the impact of expected lost sales for the period, as well as continued expenses related to partner wages and benefits, store operations and additional costs incurred in response to the COVID-19 outbreak," the company said in a regulatory filing. (bit.ly/2wvRqmz)

Starbucks said it has been forced to defer some store openings planned in China for fiscal year 2020 to next year due to the outbreak.

The company said its business has also been affected in Japan, South Korea and Italy due to store closures and reduced customer traffic, but it is unable to quantify the impact as the outbreak is still in early stages.

The company, which generated about 70% of its revenue from the United States in the last fiscal year, said it was business as usual at home.

Starbucks’ shares were up 0.6% at $76.65 in extended trading on Thursday. The stock fell 4.4% during regular trading hours and closed at $76.19.

Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber and Uttaresh.V

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