Starbucks Earnings: What to Expect

(Starbucks earnings preview updated with news of eGift card program and Seattle's Best coffee's iced canned lattes.)

SEATTLE ( TheStreet) -- Starbucks ( SBUX) is expected to post an 18% jump in fiscal first-quarter profits, and investors will look to the coffee chain for news on its plans for international expansion.

Starbucks is due to report its quarterly results after the closing bell Wednesday. Analysts' consensus call is for Starbucks to book first-quarter profits of $294.5 million, or 39 cents per share, on revenue of $2.93 billion. In the year-earlier fourth quarter Starbucks earned 33 cents per share on revenue of $2.72 billion.

As of Monday's closing price, Starbucks shares were 4.2% higher year-to-date after surging 39.3% in 2010.

Like food and beverage peers Yum! Brands ( YUM) and McDonald's ( MCD), Starbucks has been looking overseas for growth .

Earlier this month Starbucks announced plans to expand in India through a non-binding memorandum of understanding with India's Tata Coffee.

Under the terms of the deal the pair will collaborate on sourcing and roasting green coffee beans in Tata Coffee's Coorg, India-based facility, as well as jointly exploring "the development of Starbucks retail stores in associated retail outlets and hotels."

Starbucks-Tata is likely to start out by procuring green coffee beans from Tata's existing estates and roasting the beans in Tata's existing roasting facilities. Starbucks implied the pair will later look into investing additional facilities and roasting coffee for exports to other markets.

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