Starbucks does not currently offer private parties or individuals franchise opportunities to purchase or establish a branch of its coffee shops, as of 2015. However, the company has offered limited franchising agreements in some countries in Europe. In these scenarios, the process for purchasing a franchise involves submitting a purchasing application that include proving sufficient financial solvency to cover the necessary fees and costs.
The franchise business model involves a company or person selling licences to other entities that allow them to open a business establishment selling its products or offering its services. This model includes the rights to use the licence holder's brand as well as its business model and have access to other features such as product sourcing, customer service teams and corporate guidance. When a person purchases a franchise, she must submit different forms to obtain the appropriate authorizations, as well as pay various fees that cover the costs of building the establishment. She is then able to keep a portion of the profits while retaining a high level of control over the location.
Starbucks offers the ability to license some of its products for use in certain retail environments. This differs from a franchise in that the party creating the agreement does not own the coffee shop location and instead essentially rents it from Starbucks. The Investor Relations page of Starbucks.com features details of the company's licensing policies.