SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 1 (Xinhua) -- Starbucks Corporation is looking for a long-term growth in the markets of China and the United States next year as it reported an increase of sales in China on Thursday.
The world's largest coffee chain said in its fourth fiscal quarter financial report that its revenue rose to 6.3 billion U.S. dollars in the quarter that ended in September, up 11 percent from a year ago.
Starbucks' better-than-expected financial report showed that comparable-store sales in China rose 2 percent in the fiscal year 2018 that drove up the global comparable store sales by 3 percent.
Starbucks said its fiscal Q4 sales in China grew 1 percent by improving from -2 percent reported in the previous quarter.
"In (fiscal) Q4, Starbucks delivered improved sequential results in both our Americas and China/Asia Pacific segments," said Starbucks Chief Financial Officer Scott Maw.
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said his company, based in Seattle, Washington State on the U.S. west coast, is aiming for growing market shares in both the United States and China.
"As we enter fiscal 2019, we are executing against a clear growth agenda, with a focus on our long-term growth markets of the U.S. and China," Johnson said.
While the United States remains the biggest Starbucks market, which recorded a 4 percent increase in same-store sales in the fiscal Q4, China is its fastest-growing market in recent years and will be its next big revenue driver following its announced expansion in the world's second largest economy.
Starbucks said in May that it planned to open nearly 3,000 new stores in China over the next few years, with an ambitious scheme to expand the current number of coffee shops from 3,300 to 6,000 by the end of 2022.
In August, Starbucks announced a partnership with Alibaba Group, the biggest e-commerce player in China, to boost the beverage company's delivery service in the world's most populous country.
Johnson said the Starbucks-Alibaba partnership inked in August will open up "500 million or more active users of those apps that will have access to Starbucks."
In December 2017, Starbucks opened a 30,000-square-foot (2,789 square meters) store, the largest Starbucks Roastery in the world, in China's financial and economic hub of Shanghai.