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This article is about the tea distributor. For the 1990s fad game, see Tazos.
Tazo Tea Company
Industry Beverage
Founded 1994 in Portland, OR
Founder Steve Smith
Headquarters Kent, Washington, United States
Area served
Products Teas & herbal teas
Number of employees
Approximately 50 (2010)
Parent Starbucks as of 1999
Slogan The reincarnation of tea.
Website www.tazo.com

Tazo Tea Company is a tea & herbal tea manufacturer and distributor founded in Portland, Oregon, now a division of Starbucks based in Kent, Washington.[1]


Tazo (/tɑːˈz/) Tea was founded in 1994 by Steve Smith. The manufacturing and distribution was maintained by North American Tea & Coffee, a Canadian-based food manufacturing company. [2]

Tazo approached Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz in 1998, seeking further investment partners. The company was purchased by Starbucks in 1999 for $8.1 million. [3]

Starbucks opened the first Tazo-branded tea shop in November 2012.[4] It closed a year later and was converted into a Teavana store.[5]


A selection of Tazo teas, showing the pre-2006 logo.

The company uses "New Age"-style marketing and product labeling. For example, every box of tea was once labeled as "blessed by a certified tea shaman" and an original tag line was "The Reincarnation of Tea."

Until 2013, the logo used the Exocet typeface, slightly modified. For example, the T in Tazo was changed for readability purposes in 2006 by sliding the cross-piece toward the top of the letter.

See also[edit]

  • Teavana, another tea brand owned by Starbucks


External links[edit]