The world’s largest coffee retailer has demonstrated that it is not immune to the vagaries of global political manoeuvring, blaming Britain’s pending exit from the European Union for a collapse in profits. The company posted a pre-tax profit of US$17.3 million in 2016, down from the $44.1 million it made in 2015. Starbucks has attributed the dip to the impact of Brexit, as well as slowing economic growth in the UK. Starbucks is in the process of restructuring its UK business to favour licencee and franchised stores, rather than owning and operating the stores itself, as well as renegotiating leases and closing unprofitable locations. At present, the UK-owned Costa Coffee is the leading coffee retailer in the UK.