Is Tim Hortons About to Drop in Yucatán?

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Mexico’s newest Tim Hortons recently opened its doors in Tamaulipas. Photo: Courtesy

Tim Hortons might not be a household name in Mexico, but that will change if the Canadian coffee-and-donut giant has its way. 

The iconic chain began opening storefronts in northern Mèxico in 2017 and now says it’s ready for a serious expansion.

According to the company, Tim Hortons will begin selling its Canadian-infused coffee and treats in major Méxican cities over the next few years — likely to include Mérida and Cancún. A move into Mérida was announced before the pandemic but was apparently pushed back.  

While the novelty of having Tim Hortons in México is likely to be quite the hit with Canadians here, the company will have to fight an uphill battle against other international competitors like Dunkin Donuts, Krispy Kreme, and Starbucks, the latter of which already has nearly 800 locations in the country. 

Then there is also the fact that México is home to many popular coffee chains, including The Italian Coffee Company and Café Macchiato.

During its expansion, Tim Hortons is likely to bank on its Canadian heritage to set it apart, much like Montreal-based Boston’s Pizza did in the Méxican fast-casual / sports-bar market.

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Tim Hortons was founded by professional hockey player Tim Horton and business partner Jim Charade in Hamilton, Ontario. 

Tim Hortons is well known for its iconic “Double-Double” coffee (two creams and two sugars) and its bite-sized donut holes called “Timbits.”

Given Canada’s population of roughly 40 million and Tim Hortons’ nearly 4,000 shops spread around the country, there is one Tim Hortons location for approximately every 1,000 Canadians. 

Over 660 locations are in the United States, and 1,477 are spread across 11 other nations, including England, Ireland, Mexico and the Middle East. 

The company’s international expansion comes amid declining sales in its core market, criticism over food quality, and labor disputes. 

Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy, and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway.
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