Howard Schultz hits the road

Photo: Howard Schultz/Instagram

Former Starbucks chairman and CEO Howard Schultz plans to travel the country beginning early next year, including stops in states that could help in a possible Democratic presidential run.

Driving the news: Schultz, 65, will hit the road to promote his book that'll come out Feb. 12, with the campaign-y title: "From the Ground Up: A Journey to Reimagine the Promise of America."

This isn't the coffee story:

  • The publisher, Random House Group, says the book "begins with the story of how a boyhood fraught with shame and fear motivated Schultz to become the first in his family to graduate from college and build the kind of company that his father, a working class laborer, never had a chance to work for."
  • "A parallel narrative offers a behind-the-scenes look at Schultz’s journey to challenge preconceived notions of corporate responsibility. From health insurance, stock ownership, and free college tuition for part-time baristas to controversial campaigns about race and refugees, Starbucks became a lab for innovative ideas."

Be smart: In a message that sounds much like a national platform, Schultz will emphasize opportunity for younger Americans.

  • We hear that Schultz will argue that taking care of people and succeeding aren't mutually exclusive — that, in fact, one leads to the other.
  • He'll talk about flouting the prevailing ethos on Wall Street of minimizing employee costs, and instead building a loyal, engaged workforce.
  • This is no Medicare for All: Schultz will make a very centrist case, arguing that both business and government have roles in unlocking human potential.
  • Looking ahead, Schultz is said to be considering both public service, and promoting catalytic philanthropy and social entrepreneurship at scale.

The buzz: Democrats doubt there's room in the party's presidential race for two corporate celebrities to the right of Bernie.

  • So watch whether Michael Bloomberg beats Schultz into the race. 

Howard Schultz on Instagram.

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