Localized Strategy

There are 51 outlets spread all over the island, with a primary presence in town and CBD area. 19 of them provide free wi-fi service. There are a total of 7 24-hour stores, with 5 situated in the Changi Airport terminals.

We interviewed CBTL Singapore’s marketing manager to find out about CBTL’s localization strategy and the Singapore market. As some of their information are confidential and cannot be disclosed to us, we used the information we could find on research portals to substantiate our findings.

One other limitation is that as Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is a Private Limited company, its financial annual reports are not readily available. Thus, we sat in at Coffee Bean for an observation to help us value the estimated revenue and profits of Coffee Bean outlets on a daily and monthly basis.

Our Findings

Target Market in Singapore

Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf does not have a specific target market as it varies across outlets depending on geographic regions. CBD stores’ (e.g. Bras Basah, ION Orchard) customers are generally PMEBs (Professionals, Managers, Executives, Businessmen) while neighbourhood stores’ customers are generally families and students. Thus, different stores have their own specific Living Standards Measures (LSMs) targeting at the specific group. In terms of product positioning, Ice Blended drinks are targeted at the younger customers and CBTL single serve beverage machines are targeted at the working executives. This way, CBTL ensures they  have something for all everyone and is not limited by age.

How Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Reaches Out to Singaporeans

CBTL uses different ways to reach out to their customers such as their corporate website, e-newsletters, in-store collaterals, social media, press advertisements, outreach programs in schools, community efforts etc. They  alsoown a Singapore Facebook page and are highly active in social media, with regular updates every few days. Till date, they have 14,227 likes.

Seasonal Promotions

CBTL holds regular seasonal promotions pertaining to the local flavor (e.g. Chinese New Year, Valentine’s Day, Christmas, New Year) and updates their in-store marketing collaterals regularly.

Average time a customer spends @ CBTL

Half of the customers that we observed would dash in, grab their takeaway coffee, and stay in the outlet for less than 5 minutes. However, the seats in the outlets during peak hours tend to be more than half-filled. The average time that one spends with a group at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is 1.5 hours. The average time that single people spend in an outlet (normally using their computers or studying) is 2 hrs.

Market Share

From the data, we can see that CBTL company shares in Singapore since 2006-2010 have been stagnant at 0.4%.

 Est. Total Monthly Revenue Per Outlet

Est. Total Yearly Profits Across all Outlets

In summary, we estimated CBTL’s monthly revenue per outlet to be $128,700 and its estimated monthly profits per outlet to be $59, 090, amounting to an estimated value of about $22 million/yr in profits across all outlets. Although we do not have enough financial data to estimate seasonal losses, our findings from our interview, market share, and estimated revenues and profits indicate that The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has managed to maintain consistent profits and market share in the F&B industry in Singapore over the years.

Currently with a consistent market share of 0.4% for its café outlets, CBTL’s recent launch of its “CBTL” single-serve beverage system indicates that it intends to venture into and capture market share in the coffee beverage machine industry as well.


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