Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz quite literally handed the keys to the company to his successor on Wednesday. Reaching into his pocket during the company’s annual meeting of shareholders, Schultz plucked the door key to Seattle’s Pike Place Market store, the company’s original location, and handed it to president and chief operating officer Kevin Johnson, who will officially succeed Schultz in early April.

“That has been in my pocket for 35 years,” he said.

Schultz has never shied away from turning the usually drab annual investor meeting into a show of its own – a choreographed event that has long mixed emotional video, lofty commentary on the state of the nation and even pop star surprises for its shareholders. Wednesday was no different, with an appearance from Grammy nominee Leon Bridges, a flag presentation by the Seattle Recruiting Battalion Color Guard and the singing of the national anthem by a chorus of green-aproned Starbucks employees. Even the corporate secretary, announcing results of shareholder votes, made a joke about the Oscars.

Yet it was the passing of the torch from Schultz to Johnson that took center stage, the most visible handoff yet of the succession announced in December. The company unveiled a handful of initiatives, from the expansion of veteran and minority youth hiring programs to new food items in its stores. A question from a conservative shareholder think tank prompted Schultz to respond that boycotts over his pledge to hire refugees had “unequivocally” no impact on the company’s business – producing some of the loudest applause of the event.

But the meeting – and in an interview two days before the shareholder event – Schultz sought to reflect on the culture he’d built at the coffee giant and reassure investors about the person who would soon take the reins. “I have so much faith in Kevin’s ability and leadership skills that he’s the right person at the right time,” Schultz said in an interview Monday, comments that he echoed in the meeting Wednesday. “I think he’s better prepared than me to lead the company into the future.”

Still, Johnson will be taking over a company whose sales in the U.S. have not been on a caffeinated high. This year marks the first time since the financial crisis that the stock has been down in the year preceding the annual meeting. As U.S. sales failed to meet analyst expectations five quarters in a row, investors have driven down shares in Starbucks 4 percent over the past year, compared with a 15 percent rise in the S&P 500 stock index. In January, it trimmed its full-year revenue forecast.

Both Johnson and Schultz said they are confident about the company’s growth in China, where it now operates more than 2,600 stores and is opening more than one store a day, as well as new digital efforts to enhance ordering and gift-card sharing and new food and coffee options. Schultz, who will step down from the CEO role but continue on as executive chairman, plans to lead the company’s new high-end Roastery and Reserve brands, as well as focus on the company’s social impact efforts.

He was one of the first non-tech CEOs to speak out against Trump’s first travel ban. He promised to hire 10,000 refugees over the next five years in 75 countries.

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