That was just a month ago. As of this week, though, Luckin Coffee hasn't just surpassed Starbucks in location count in China: it's absolutely left it behind.
That's because Luckin now has 4,910 locations scheduled to open in China, with a total of 4,500 scheduled to be open by years end, compared to Starbuck's 4,300. So, to be clear: Luckin has, at years' end, 200 more locations than Starbucks and another 400+ in the works.
The two massive coffee chains changed places in early November when they both listed around 4,200 locations in China. But since then, Starbucks has added just around 100 locations compared to nearly 700 for Luckin.
Mapping the new locations reveals that Luckin's latest locations tend to be in more remote areas not already services by Starbucks, signaling a slight departure from the coffee startup's early strategy that looked more like a block-and-tackle the opposition roadmap. The chain is also reportedly eyeing the Middle East as a new expansion territory in 2020.
About the Data:
Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales.