October 18, 2007/ChinaRealNews delivered by Newstex/Beijing -- Starbucks and PepsiCo will launch "ready-to-drink" bottled coffee beverages in China, the companies said.

China will be the first international foray for the partnership which until now has distributed bottled beverages such as Starbucks's Frappuccino and DoubleShot coffee drinks only in North America, the partners said.

PepsiCo will distribute the bottled beverages in China, where Starbucks operates more than 540 stores.

Starbucks and PepsiCo did not provide a target sales figure or estimate the volume of the bottled beverages which will be distributed in China.

"In our public presentations, we don't recount details by country ... China is a very important market for PepsiCo," said Dick Detwiler, a spokesman for the company that makes Pepsi soft drinks and Frito-Lay snacks.

Detwiler also declined to say whether the Starbucks products would be on sale where PepsiCo's products are offered.

Starbucks currently sells ready-to-drink coffee beverages in South Korea, Japan and Taiwan through relationships with other companies.

The expanded relationship with PepsiCo will not change the current relationships in those three markets, the two companies said.

From the October 22, 2007, Prepared Foods e-Flash