Having already proven that it can sell other companies' music, coffee giant Starbucks is planning to launch its own record label and is close to a deal for the next album from former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney to be its first release, according to sources familiar with the plans.

The formation of Starbucks Records, as the unit is expected to be called, could be announced as soon as this week, according to these sources.

Launching a record label is something "that has been bandied about for quite a while," said one source. "They think they are empowered enough to do that."

Said another: "They have a very targeted, efficient distribution channel that allows them to be profitable in a limited way with music."

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