Starbucks CEO Laxman Narasimhan said on Tuesday people protesting against the company over its stance on the Israel-Hamas war have been “influenced by misrepresentation on social media” of what the coffee chain stands for.
Narasimhan, in a letter to employees, noted many of Starbucks’ stores have experienced incidents of vandalism, and added the company has worked with local authorities to ensure the safety of its workers and customers.
The coffee chain is among several Western brands that have come under pressure from consumers calling for companies to take a stance in the Israel-Hamas war, with some even facing boycott campaigns in some Arab countries.
Seattle-based Starbucks also sued the Workers United union in October, which represents thousands of baristas at about 360 U.S. stores, after the union briefly posted a statement on social media that the company said “reflected” the union’s “support for violence perpetrated by Hamas”.
The company at the time said it “unequivocally condemns acts of terrorism, hate and violence”, adding it strongly disagreed with the views expressed by the union. — Reuters