Starbucks Colludes with Journal Sentinel in Milwaukee to Exclude Independent Competition
I first read about this in this week's Shepherd Express (www.shepherd-express.com), but have also read a few blog posts from Shepherd columnist Art Kumbalek (www.focktoberfest.com).
The Journal Sentinel's commercialized MKE product cut a deal with Starbucks to kick the Shepherd out of area stores, and now the two are having a little heated competition. MKE started running ads saying that they were the exclusive provider of free newspapers at Starbucks. It turns out the ad was a lie, and the Shepherd caught them.
Here's the quote from this week's Shepherd Express:
"When the Shepherd contacted Starbucks, Kelly Mattran, Midwest regional manager for Starbucks Coffee Co., said:
â€œBased on limited space in our newspaper racks, Milwaukee-area Starbucks stores will continue to carry the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and MKE newspapers. Individual Starbucks stores will continue to have the option to carry Shepherd Express newspapers based on available space. The decision as to whether a particular Starbucks carries the Shepherd will be at the discretion of each individual store manager.â€
The Shepherd Express has been an independent voice in Milwaukee for the past 25 years. You, our readers, are our only leverage when it comes to dealing with large corporations that do not always agree with our political viewpoint. The Journal Sentinel is able to pay distributors a few pennies more on the sale of each paper if they can squeeze out the competition.
So, if you enjoy reading the Shepherd Express weekly and picking it up when you buy your coffee, please let your local Starbucks store manager know. â€
It sounds like this happens in a lot of cities, and the Willamette Weekly (www.wweek.com)in Portland, Oregon is in an ongoing feud with Starbuck's Corporate. In fact, in this week's issue (www.wweek.com/editorial/3352/9933/)they've got coverage of an attempted fire bombing of a Starbucks by area activists.
So, we're not there yet in Milwaukee, but it's worth noting the pro local policies of both Stone Creek Coffee(www.stonecreekcoffee.com) and Alterra (www.alterracoffee.com) when you think about where you're buying your next latte.
Here's a link to what's going on in Portland with Starbucks: portland.indymedia.org/en/action/stopstarbucks/