I don't want to jump to conclusions that aren't there and let's be clear that the Illinois locations aren't affected yet, but Starbucks is suddenly closing stores and there are theories about why. Let's explore where this coffee bean business trail takes us.

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I saw this surprising news shared by The Business Journals earlier this week that Starbucks was suddenly closing 7 different locations. Again, let's be clear that so far all 7 locations are in the San Francisco, California area.

This news of the California Starbucks closings coincided with another report by industry site Restaurant Clicks stating that over the past 2 years, Starbucks has closed 400 different locations. They admit that even 400 Starbucks closing is only a tiny fraction of the more than 34,000 locations around the globe.

Why is Starbucks closing stores?

There's little debate that Starbucks is the most successful coffee brand in the world, so why would they be closing any locations?

Previous Starbucks closings were announced with the stated reason being "safety concerns". That included a location in Kansas City where there were multiple police calls although it appears (according to The Kansas City Star) that no charges resulted from those calls.

The Restaurant Clicks article mentions that there are those who are convinced that Starbucks is closing locations where workers have tried to organize for better benefits. Starbucks denies this unequivocally.

Anytime a chain closes 400 locations in only a two year period, there will be those that ask if their local Starbucks is next. So far that answer is no as there are new places opening almost constantly. Missouri and Illinois Starbucks are not included on any closings lists as of this writing. We'll update if that changes in the future.

Check out the Evolution of the Starbucks Holiday Cups Over Their First 20 Years

The 2015 "War on Christmas" cups may be the most famous, but the 2016 cup had a special Idaho connection! Scroll through to see how they linked back to the Gem State!

Gallery Credit: Michelle Heart