Get your afternoon latte early today, because Starbucks—all 7,100 US locations—is closing at 5:30pm for 3 hours of staff training, CNNMoney reports. The company says it hopes baristas will “deepen their passion for coffee” and even “transform the customer experience,” not to speak of turning around a wicked stock slide. Smelling weakness, Dunkin' Donuts is pouncing, offering all its coffee beverages for 99 cents this afternoon.
A company spokesperson shot down a rumor that the closing signaled a return to manual espresso machines. “I’m not sure why it’s going to take them three hours to learn how to press a button,” said the owner of one independent coffee house in LA, which is offering free drinks during the blackout. Starbucks’ stock fell 42% last year, prompting 600 layoffs.