June 19, 2012 / 4:55 PM / in 5 years

Starbucks outlines Latin America growth plans

A man carries a Starbucks logo sign after a corporate event at a hotel in Shanghai April 19, 2012. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

(Reuters) - Starbucks Corp (SBUX.O) on Tuesday laid out its expansion plans for Latin America, where the world’s biggest coffee chain sources the majority of its coffee beans.

The company, which operates more than 560 shops in the region, will open its first Costa Rica shop in San Jose’s posh Escazu neighborhood on Wednesday.

Seattle-based Starbucks also said it plans to open “several hundred stores” in Brazil in the next five years.

Starbucks and joint-venture partner Alsea (ALSEA.MX) expect to add more than 300 new stores in Argentina and Mexico by 2015.

Earlier this month, Starbucks opened a farmer support center in Manizales, Colombia aimed at helping local growers improve coffee quality and yield.

Shares in Starbucks were up 2 percent to $55.23 in midday trading on the Nasdaq.

Reporting By Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by Leslie Gevirtz

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