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MarketWatch reports that Luckin Coffee, a Chinese company that has gotten a lot of attention by being surprisingly competitive with both Starbucks and McDonald’s there, has filed for an initial public offering (IPO) inn the US that values the company at close to $3 billion.

Luckin reportedly plans to open about 2,500 stores in China this year, which would bring its total to 4,500. The battle with Starbucks and McDonald’s seems to be largely in the delivery space, which in China’s densely packed cities requires the ability to respond quickly and provide differentiated service.

• Interesting piece in the GW Hatchet - an independent student newspaper serving the George Washington University campus - about how “Starbucks outposts in neighborhoods like Dupont Circle, Chinatown and Downtown D.C. have closed their doors, and local coffee shops have begun to take their place. Workers at local coffee shops and students said more people may turn to coffee shops only found in D.C. and smaller chains for a more personal experience between customers and employees.”

According to the story, “The closures are a result of Starbucks’ plan to close 150 stores nationally … A Starbucks spokesperson declined to say how many locations have closed in the District within the past year or if the chain will open more stores in D.C. … In interviews, a dozen students said they prefer local chains or independent coffee shops to chains like Starbucks or Dunkin’ because of the welcoming atmosphere and quality of coffee.”
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