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Welcome Break and Starbucks set for franchise deal?

20 February 2006
Welcome Break and Starbucks set for franchise deal?

Roadside group Welcome Break has denied reports it is planning to ditch its Coffee Primo café brand in favour of a franchise deal with Starbucks.

Several industry sources have said an agreement is in place following the successful tie-up between rival group Roadchef and Whitbread's Costa Coffee.

Roadchef chief executive Martin Grant said: "I understand a deal has been done and they have a test site lined up in Corley on the M6 near Coventry."

A Welcome Break source at the Corley service station refused to confirm to Caterer that a deal with Starbucks had happened but conceded that it "may be happening" in the future.

Another industry insider, who confirmed a deal was in place, said: "It makes perfect sense. Welcome Break is now the logical roadside operator to do business with Starbucks."

Welcome Break, which has 24 UK sites, refuted the speculation saying it had "no announcement to make at this stage".

Starbucks also refused to comment.

By Tom Bill

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