By Money & Finance
Today, Starbucks (+0.78%) is opening its first location in ItalyÂ—a "Reserve Roastery" in MilanÂ—as an homage to the very country that inspired its espresso-fueled vision (and ~28,000 stores worldwide).
But this isn't your corner coffeehouse
Look back at the picture. That's what theÂ veryÂ upscale, 25,000-square-foot Milan Roastery looks like.
Plus, it offers locally roasted coffee from 30 countries alongside freshly baked pizzas and pastries...and alcoholic drinks so you won't miss your after-workÂ aperitivo.
There's a backstory:Â Starbucks Chairman Emeritus Howard Schultz first traveled to Milan in 1983...when there were onlyÂ fourÂ Starbucks locations, all of them in Seattle.
Italy's cafe culture inspired him to "build a company with the same nucleus of warmth, community, and human connection," Starbucks wrote inÂ a release literally called, "Starbucks comes to Italy: An opera verismo in seven acts." Italy worked its magic
Now, StarbucksÂ opensÂ a coffee shop chock full of human connection (if someone writing your name on a cup counts)Â every four hoursÂ on average, and it clocked in $22.4 billion in net revenue last year.
This is just its third Roastery (after Seattle and Shanghai). But Starbucks plans to open Roasteries in New York, Tokyo, and Chicago this year and next.
FWIW:Â The Milan Roastery might not be an easy sell for the proud Italian coffee-lover. Starbucks will charge more than 3x the going price for espresso and cappuccino in Milan (at least visitors from NYC will be used to overpaying). Already, oneÂ consumer groupÂ has filed a complaint over prices. Plus, Italians areÂ deeplyÂ protectiveÂ of their coffee culture. Good luck defending why your "grande" size is only a medium.
So why open the Roastery?
Starbucks is trying to expand abroad as U.S. sales stagnate (and forceÂ store closures). In China, for example, StarbucksÂ opensÂ a new location every 15 hours.
And expanding its global footprint is as important as everÂ—$13 billion of Starbucks's $73 billion valuationÂ is tiedÂ to opening stores over the next few years, per Forbes.
h/t Daily Roast
What would have been a milestone for gun “manufacturingÂ” gets the boot:Â Today was set to be the first day youÂ’d be able to download blueprints to 3D-print a gun at home.
But instead, a federal judgeÂ blocked the public availabilityÂ of the blueprints just a handful of hours before they were set to hit the open internet.
How we got here:Â Nonprofit Defense Distributed and the State DepartmentÂ reached a settlementÂ earlier this year allowing it to release DIY 3D-printed gun plans. What it meant: People with a 3D printerÂ could haveÂ printed aÂ range of firearmsÂ that are untraceable andÂ invisible to background checks. But what happened?Â Gun control advocatesÂ took actionÂ andÂ numerous statesÂ filed a joint lawsuitÂ aimed at preventing the blueprints from becoming public, citing a threat to public safety...and it worked.
The view from Washington:Â President Trump was skeptical (FYI, the NRA notes that undetectable plastic guns have been illegal for 30 years, and the White House supports that law).
Another perspective, from Medium blogger BJ Campbell:Â 3D-printed guns would barely work,Â he writes, not to mention...they're way more expensive to build than buying a regular handgun.
Bottom line:Â Thought the gun control debate was already heated? Technological innovations like 3D printing will only create more battle lines.
By Guest Nicole
A 3D-printed surveillance drone, already successfully flight-tested, weighing a mere four kilograms and with a range of 50 kilometers, has been presented at the Innoprom-2016 exhibition in Russia.
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