Behind the scenes at Ballard’s best coffee

We’re talking about Ballard’s own Coffee Equipment Company, maker of the Clover coffeemaker, which was purchased by Starbucks earlier this year. Wired just did an in-depth profile of the company, and there are some interesting details. While Starbucks will help maintain the 250 or so Clovers already sold, it’s refusing to sell any more to independent coffeehouses. Stumptown Coffee out of Portland was so upset with the Starbucks acquisition, it sold its Clovers on the spot. Starbucks also pulled the plug on CloverNet, an online database that tracks sales, maintenance and brewing preferences for Clover owners. Meanwhile, Starbucks is aiming to roll out 80 Clovers in “upscale” markets across the country.

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