Temporary changes in consumer behavior following the Nov. 13 terror attacks in Paris had a big negative impact on Starbucks' business, according to the company.
In its earnings report for the prior quarter, the coffee behemoth reported that in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, revenues dropped by 6 percent from the same quarter in the year prior. Same-store sales in the region increased, but by just 1 percent, widely missing analysts' expectations.
In the earnings report itself, Starbucks wrote that the revenue decrease "was primarily due to unfavorable foreign currency translation and the shift in the portfolio toward more licensed stores."
But in later commentary, the company offered an additional explanation for the weak numbers.
"EMEA's performance was particularly strong given the impact of foreign exchange and challenges to topline growth following the tragic terror attacks in Paris," chief financial officer Scott Maw said in introductory comments on the company's Tuesday evening earnings call.
When an analyst asked for more details, Maw added: "October looked like a really good month to us, and it looked like we were right on track to what we expected for the year. And then after what happened in Paris, we've seen some softening, and now it's coming back."
In an interview Friday on CNBC, CEO Howard Schultz amped up the drama: "We were on track to have a record quarter in Europe, and that unfortunately came to a screeching halt as a result of the act of terror in Paris."