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Should Starbucks Worry About McDonald’s in Coffee Sales?

In early December 2023, McDonald’s launched its afternoon coffee, beverage, and snack chain — CosMc’s. The first location in Bolingbrook, Illinois quickly went viral. There were lines double-wrapped around the store to check out the new drink spot on the block. All of which begs the question… should Starbucks be worried? 

Why McDonald’s is Getting into the Coffee Game

Before we get into the potential caffeine war on our hands, why did McDonald’s create a separate coffee entity? 

Turns out, our afternoon pick-me-ups are BIG business… 

McDonald’s CEO, Chris Kempczinski told CNBC this statistic: 


However, adding these customizable McDonald’s drinks would significantly slow down existing restaurants. 

As a result, CosMc’s was born to tap into this lucrative market. Despite similar menus, Starbucks and the Mickey D’s spinoff offer customers two different vibes… 

The Starbucks Vs. McDonald’s Coffee Experience

Believe it or not, CosMc’s and the Seattle coffee brand are about the same price point. 

A tricked-out coffee from Starbucks is only 7 to 8% more expensive than one from the McDonald’s franchise. Yet, the dissimilar customer experiences might decide who will come out on top… 

Anyone who indulges in Starbies regularly is familiar with this scene… 

The barista takes your order, writes your name on the cup, and personally hands it to you when it’s ready…


The Maccie’s beverage competitor is entirely drive-thru with no face-to-face interaction. 

Therefore, you won’t find any future screenwriters working on their magnum opus for hours at CosMc’s…. 

As the marketplace changes, there is an appeal to both options — the personal touch, not loitering screenwriters, that is. 

Is CosMc’s a REAL Threat?

At the moment, it is too early to tell if McDonald’s will take the coffee world by storm. 

According to statements from CEO, Kempczinski, there are plans for 10 more CosMc’s over 2024. 

However, the company also plans to evaluate the chain’s performance after a year before deciding on further expansion. For the time being, both Starbucks and CosMc’s are doing well in their own lanes. 

Be Great, 

GCTV Staff

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