As it turns out, the secret actually lies in the beans. The first sparks of this passionate and heavily caffeinated relationship dates back over 60 years to the youthful counterculture of the 50’s and early 60’s. From Greenwich Village to the west coast— smoke-filled, coffee-saturated, beatnik-packed clubs were inundated with rebellious youth who, according to Seattle historian Walt Crowley was about making a statement. “You weren’t hanging out at Dick’s or Burger Master with the muscle-car guys after the football game, or at the soda fountain like the glee club. It was about rebelling, and smoking, with eclectic, potentially dangerous people.” In Seattle, the first of these popular coffee houses to open its doors was the “Café Encore” in 1958.
Throughout the 60’s, thousands of baby boomers enrolled at the University of Washington— continually packing these coffee houses along “The Ave.”— listening to music, protesting the establishment, and drinking java. Down the coast in Berkeley, California, a coffee importer, named Alfred Peet, recognized the skyrocketing potential of these hangouts as a respite for disaffected baby boomers. He opened Peet’s Coffee & Tea in 1966. Meanwhile, back in Seattle Peet’s buddy, Zev Siegel and two other former Seattle college students were starting a fledging roasting business. Driven by a passion to create exceptional coffee, and in need of a local source for high-quality, imported beans, Siegel convinced Peet to sell them his magic coffee beans. This startup… became Starbucks, which opened its doors in 1970. Zev Siegel left the business in the early 80’s as the largest roaster in Washington State.
Howard Shultz, Starbucks’ recently retired, and influential, CEO came onboard in 1982, and had the incredible insight to recognize that latte, espresso and cappuccino was the wave of coffee’s future. The rest, as they say… is history. Starbucks, its iconic mermaid, and the city of Seattle are forever linked. While the weather in the northwest can often be cold, damp and unforgiving, coffee is a warm and welcomed elixir. As Joshua Boyt, from Victoria Coffee Roasters, perfectly phrased it, “coffee is our liquid sunshine in Seattle.” This city provided a cradle for coffee to take off in the 1970s and 1980s — given the right climate of expertise, consumer interest, business acumen, and… of course… the perfect beans.
The familiar Starbucks brand is a globally recognized presence. Premier Fixtures, and Synsor Corporation, are proud to play a role in the promotional advancement of the Starbucks name— exhibited by the sleek kiosk design created by the Company’s talented engineering, and production teams. The recent merger of Synsor and Premier Fixtures incorporates 45 years of display-marketing expertise— in a diverse range of markets and industries. The combined talents of these industry giants offers tremendous strategic insight, and brings a dynamic, coast-to-coast advantage to Premier’s growing family of high-profile, consumer brands.