Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella Joins Starbucks Board, Coffee Needs More Tech Sugar

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella joins Starbucks board of directors

Starbucks, the world’s leading coffee house chain, has elected Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft Corporation, to the Starbucks Board of Directors, along with Rosalind Brewer, former President and Chief Executive Officer of Sam’s Club and Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, Executive Chairman of the LEGO Brand Group during Starbucks’ Annual Meeting of Shareholders this week.

It’s not unusual to see CEOs of large corporations sitting on the boards of other corporations, but Microsoft’ Satya Nadella will be a huge asset for Starbucks technology push. Technology is now at the forefront of innovation in the restaurant industry, as digital payments, mobile and voice ordering, and customer management using technology not only offer increased delivery speeds and efficiency, but also enhance customer experience in the process.

“Mobile Order & Pay allows Starbucks customers to order in advance via an app and pick up their order from their chosen location, thus eliminating queues and making coffee-to-go even more convenient.

Payments are made through the Starbucks loyalty card, which creates operational efficiency as it reduces credit card costs and rewards the customer. The technology frees up more employees towards production and enables faster execution of orders.”OgilvyDo

Mobile payments accounted for 20% of total transactions during the most recent quarter, while advanced ordering via the Starbucks app accounted for 7% of transactions.

Starbucks launched voice ordering capabilities within the Starbucks mobile iOS app and the popular Amazon Alexa platform in January this year. This was, according to Starbucks:

“an extension of Starbucks Mobile Order & Pay, which allows customers to order and pay for their items before arriving at their store, further extending the barista and customer interaction within the company’s digital ecosystem.”

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella invited to join Starbucks' board of directors

Starbucks Debuts Voice Ordering | Starbucks Newsroom

Starbucks drove deep into connected cars by partnering with Ford and Amazon to allow customers to order and pay for their coffee from Ford vehicles equipped with the latest Sync3 infotainment system.

These are just a few examples of how Starbucks is using technology to further its cause. They want to exploit technology to make things easy for its customers, as well as benefit the company. The decision to bring in Satya Nadella to the board is a clear signal about the role technology is going to play in Starbucks’ future.

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