Nestle SA (NESN)’s Nespresso coffee brand opened a new store in Geneva and said it plans to open another boutique in Switzerland this year, bringing the total number of shops in the country to 22 by the end of 2012.
Nespresso’s growth rate in its home market is “good,” Pascal Hottinger, the head of Nespresso’s business in Switzerland, said in an interview at the opening in a Manor department store today, without giving a figure. The next opening will also be in a Manor store, he said.
“With Nespresso, you have a kind of small luxury one can afford on a daily basis,” Hottinger said. “We have a product that is probably resisting economic turmoil better than others.”
Nespresso faces increased competition as food companies including Kraft Foods Inc. (KFT:US) seek to tap the expanding market for single-serve coffee. Vevey, Switzerland-based Nestle has sued Ethical Coffee Co. and U.S. foodmaker Sara Lee Corp. (SLE:US) after they began to offer coffee-filled capsules compatible with Nespresso machines in 2010.
Nespresso, which also supplies coffee to businesses, and a partner have introduced a professional machine capable of making as many as 300 cups per hour, Hottinger said.
“We were already present in five-star hotels and high- class restaurants but the chefs would tell us if we have a big reception, we need more high capacity,” Hottinger said. “It’s a new inroad for Nespresso into gastronomy.”
The machine has automated cleaning and makes a broad range of coffees, he said.
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