LONDON—Seattle's Best Coffee (SBC) has extended Zeno Group's PR remit beyond the US, as the Starbucks brand launches in the UK.

SBC's UK launch is being viewed as an attempt to mitigate flagging Starbucks UK sales by directly competing with cheaper competitors such as McDonald's.

Zeno has handled SBC's US PR for the past four years, and takes on UK duties following a competitive review. Zeno sister agency Edelman is Starbucks' agency of record.

SBC will roll out in partnership with Asda, KFC and Kiddicare, with plans to have 100 outlets in place by the end of this year. 

“We chose to launch Seattle’s Best Coffee in the UK because we know Brits love their coffee and we want to bring over 40 years of coffee heritage and expertise to great retailers, who we have not yet had an opportunity to partner with," said Starbucks EMEA foodservice director, Simon Hillier.