In July of 2022, Starbucks announced the closure of 16 profitable locations due to dangerous incidents involving drug use and "other disruptions" in cafes. In a leaked video, former interim CEO Howard Schultz said that the US "has become unsafe," and that Starbucks is a "window to America."
Now, the company is closing seven locations in San Francisco. And while they didn't cite the explosion in crime in the Golden Gate City (and no leaked videos to shed light), the move comes amid a shocking survey that found roughly 97% of San Francisco's restaurants have experienced some form of graffiti or property crime in the past month.
"Each year as a standard course of business, we evaluate the store portfolio to determine where we can best meet our community and customers’ needs," a spokesperson told the NY Post on Wednesday. "This includes opening new locations, identifying stores in need of investment or renovation, exploring locations where an alternative format is needed and, in some instances, re-evaluating our footprint."
Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in the spring of 2020, some 40 retail stores have ditched the once-bustling Union Square section of downtown San Francisco — in addition to the dozens of others that have pulled up stakes from surrounding regions of the city.
Nordstrom, CB2, Anthropologie, Whole Foods, Old Navy, Saks Off 5th, Office Depot, Athleta, Abercrombie & Fitch, Disney, Marshall’s, H&M, and Gap have either closed stores within San Francisco city limits or announced plans to do so. -NY Post
In June, a study by personal finance website WalletHub ranked San Francisco as the worst-run city in the country, which is no surprise considering that a commercial real estate crisis is unfolding in the downtown area as building owners are defaulting on properties. Crime is out of control, forcing businesses to flee. And Democrats who control the town appear to have no interest in enforcing law and order.
What's more, SF office space has plummeted in value, while Moody's has lowered the city's credit rating outlook to negative amid a $780 million budget shortfall due to shrinking tax revenues.
And now, the city's homeless residents have seven fewer places to call home.