Starbucks China has announced the promotion of Molly Liu to Executive Vice-President and co-CEO alongside Belinda Wong, effective 2 October.
“Molly is a strong leader who has been instrumental in elevating the Starbucks Experience for our Chinese customers and driving industry-leading innovation for our China business,” says Starbucks CEO Laxman Narasimhan.
“There remains tremendous opportunity for Starbucks in China, and I’m confident that together, Belinda and Molly, will lead Starbucks through our next chapter, while living our mission and values.”
Wong will continue to serve as chairwoman and CEO of Starbucks China as the company aims to operate 9000 stores across 300 cities by 2025 that will create more than 10,000 additional jobs annually.
“It’s an honour to lead Starbucks China in this moment as we strengthen our focus on the experiences we create for our partners (employee) and customers,” says Liu. “Belinda and I have worked together for over a decade and I’m excited to be partnering with her in this role as we continue to deepen the moments of human connection with our Chinese customers.”
Liu has served as Starbucks China’s COO since 2021, and had previously served as the company’s VP of Digital Ventures, where she set the foundation for the company’s digital flywheel in the market with the launch of the ‘Starbucks Delivers’ and ‘Starbucks Now’ digital ordering services. This grew to contribute 48 per cent of China sales in Q3 FY23.
Liu also helped establish the Starbucks Rewards program and turned it into a leading loyalty program with over 20 million active members.
As COO, Liu oversaw the company’s accelerated expansion to more store locations while invigorating coffee beverage innovation with the successful launch of new platforms.