Forbes: Greek Start-up Mikel Cause Competition Problems to Starbucks in Dubai

FILE - In this March 18, 2015 file photo, Larenda Myres holds an iced coffee drink with a "Race Together" sticker on it at a Starbucks store in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

Starbucks has a little problem in Dubai – competition from Greek start-up Mikel Coffee Company, Forbes reports.

For years, Starbucks faced little competition at home and abroad. That’s how the company ended up with over 24,000 stores.

Until 2008, that is, when Mikel Coffee Company made its appearance in Greece with a modern coffee shop, featuring a portfolio of 130 beverages – and an elegantly designed “third place” look, staffed by well-trained and dedicated associates.

That’s how Mikel expanded like wildfire in Greece, opening up 154 stores in eight years, most of them in the middle of the country’s severe recession.

Last year, Mikel began its expansion outside Greece. Beginning with Dubai, where it has already opened up seven stores, with another thirteen under the way. And it has plans to expand in the rest of the Emirates and the Gulf countries, adapting Mikel’s menu to the tastes of UAE consumers.

Mikel, which was founded in 2008 in the Greek city of Larissa. Mikel put together attractive stores in good locations and offered a big variety of drinks and well-trained workers in black uniforms and the word spread.

Read Forbes’ full story here.