business news in context, analysis with attitude

Reuters reports that the San Francisco Board of Supervisors has approved a plan that will limit what it terms "formula retail" stores in its Hayes valley neighborhood. The city defines "formula retail" as any retailer that has 11 outlets as well as standardized characteristics such as uniforms and décor.

The move comes as communities throughout California debate whether or not they will allow big box stores such as Wal-Mart to be built within their boundaries.
KC's View:
Starbucks apparently is the formula retailer that is on many people's minds out there, and quite frankly, we can't blame them. When we were in San Francisco recently, it seemed to us that Starbucks had managed to fit coffee bars and kiosks into virtually every space that it found available. However, it didn’t seem like there was any dearth of competition - it seemed like there were coffee bars everywhere.

Except for Seattle, the City by the Bay seemed like coffee nirvana. And for people like us who while on the west coast have to work on east coast time, ubiquitous coffee bars are a necessity.