[A]t only 18 months old and valued at nearly $3 billion, China’s Luckin Coffee has filed an IPO (initial public offering) with the SEC to go public on the Nasdaq. Luckin was founded in Beijing in October 2017 and has since opened 2,370 locations, becoming the second-largest coffee retailer in the country, surpassed only by Starbucks. The announcement was made shortly after securing $150 million Series B funding from BlackRock, a private equity firm that also happens to own seven percent of Starbucks. The company has focused on “pick-up” locations in highly trafficked areas but offer little seating.
Luckin’s filing demonstrates a focus on technological and big data applications within the business:
“With our centralized technology system, we are able to simplify and standardize our operations, which allows us to improve operational efficiency and quickly expand and scale up our business. We leverage big data analytics and AI to analyze our customer behavior and transaction data, which enables us to continuously enhance our products and services, implement dynamic pricing and improve customer retention. We also leverage our proprietary technologies in store operations and supply chain to support our business, such as new store selection.”