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DavidsTea’s new chief executive, Joel Silver, said the retailer has ‘overwhelmed’ customers with new weekly products.

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

The CEO of DavidsTea says the beverage retailer is slowing its U.S. expansion because it didn't understand American tastes.

Joel Silver says the Montreal-based company has discovered that U.S. customers prefer iced tea over hot brew and have a sweeter palate than Canadians.

DavidsTea plans to open up to five stores south of the border this year after launching 49 locations since 2011.

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Silver says DavidsTea remains committed to the U.S. market but is learning from its mistakes.

Silver, who became CEO in March, says the priorities are to focus on bestsellers instead of new mixes as well as improve marketing and the online experience.

The iconic Tim Hortons chain of coffee stores has a long history in Canada, growing from a single store in Hamilton. But now thought its growth and a series of mergers, its one pillar of a huge empire of brands that will now include Popeyes.
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