NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Starbucks Corp. (SBUX) - Get Report are increasing 0.41% to $58.58 on Monday morning as the company said it will open its first stores in Italy in early 2017 with its partner Percassi, an Italian brand manager, which will own and operate the outlets.

"Now we're going to try, with great humility and respect, to share what we've been doing and what we've learned through our first retail presence in Italy," Chairman and CEO Howard Schultz said in a statement.

"Our first store will be designed with painstaking detail and great respect for the Italian people and coffee culture," he added.

The coffee giant will open its first store in Milan and expand to other Italian cities later.

Italy could be a challenging market for the company as coffee is a key part of Italian culture, with local shops competing to sell espresso and cappuccinos, the Guardian noted.

"We know that we are going to face a unique challenge with the opening of the first Starbucks store in Italy, the country of coffee, and we are confident that Italian people are ready to live the Starbucks experience, as already occurs in many other markets," Percassi President Antonio Percassi said in a statement.

TheStreet's Jack Mohr, director of research of Action Alerts PLUS, commented on Starbucks' expansion: "Starbucks' growth story is predicated both by sales momentum in its existing store base but also through its rapid, yet selective, expansion efforts internationally. The company's impeccable brand equity carries across continents, which makes us confident that its new footprint in Italy - albeit small - will prove successful."

(Starbucks is held in Jim Cramer's charitable trust Action Alerts PLUS. See all of his holding with a free trial.)

Separately, TheStreet Ratings Team has a Buy with a ratings score of A-.

This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks rated.

The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, solid stock price performance and notable return on equity.

The team believes its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Recently, TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this articles's author.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: SBUX

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