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Billionaire Howard Schultz says Starbucks is cool with Trump and his supporters

Outgoing Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz told CNBC on Friday he hopes Donald Trump addresses social issues that past Republican administrations have ignored.

Schultz said he doesn't spend a lot of time thinking about how Trump's presidency will impact Starbucks. He said the success of the coffee giant has been executing on strategy and building shareholder value, while balancing profit with "social impact."

Schultz supported Democrat Hillary Clinton, and there was even speculation during the campaign that he was considering a presidential bid himself. In an interview on "Squawk Box," Schultz said there was a "lack of respect between the two parties" over the past year.

"The dysfunction and the polarization we've seen for years hopefully is not going to continue. But what's been coming out so far is not as encouraging as one would hope," Schultz said, without elaborating.

"[But] I don't think on any level that the brand or what we represent is at odds with the president-elect or his supporters," he did say. "Ninety million customers a week are going through Starbucks stores, and I assume many of them voted for Donald Trump."

Addressing GOP businessman and Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone, who also appeared on "Squawk Box," Schultz said: "I would look forward to sitting down with you and others in a bipartisan way" to address the issue of inequality in America, "so we as business leaders can recognize that we can make a difference and address this issue and not wait for Washington."

Schultz announced on Thursday he plans to give up the CEO post and become executive chairman in April.

Starbucks President and COO Kevin Johnson will take over as chief executive from the 63-year-old Schultz, who said he's going to focus on turning the company's Reserve-branded coffee bars into destination restaurants.


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