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Page history last edited by Brian D Butler 10 years, 3 months ago










IKEA International A/S

Box 640

SE 25 106 Helsingborg, Sweden (Map)

Phone: +46-42-267-100

Fax: +46-42-132-805


Primary US Address

420 Allan Wood Rd.

Conshohocken, PA 19428 United States (Map)

Phone: 610-834-0180

Fax: 610-834-0872



Primary SIC Code

5712: Furniture stores

Primary NAICS Code

442110: Furniture Stores

D-U-N-S Number 792837239



How Swede it is. One of the world's top furniture retailers, IKEA International sells Scandinavian-style home furnishings and other housewares in about 250 stores in 34 countries. To cut transportation costs, IKEA uses flat packaging; customers assemble the products at home. The company designs its own furniture, which is made by about 1,300 suppliers in more than 50 countries. IKEA's stores feature playrooms for children and Swedish cuisine restaurants. It also sells by mail order and online. An acronym for founder Ingvar Kamprad and his boyhood home, Elmtaryd, Agunnaryd, IKEA began operating in Sweden in 1943. It is owned by Kamprad's Netherlands-based charitable foundation, Stichting Ingka.



If you're looking for fussy furniture in neutral tones, IKEA is not the place for you. Known for its use of bold colors and creative product names (a Ticka alarm clock, a Ringo stool), the company sells furniture and other household items, including dinnerware, pillows, lighting, and rugs. Recently the company has focused on outfitting bedrooms and kitchens. In 2007 IKEA again plans to concentrate on kitchen items and storage.


IKEA plans to open two dozen new stores in fiscal 2007. The Swedish furniture retailer recently opened its first store in Japan -- the world's second-largest consumer market after the US -- with a second store slated to open in Tokyo in 2007. Longer term, IKEA plans to open up to six stores in the Kanto (Tokyo) region and four to six outlets in the Kansai (Kobe and Osaka) regions of the country. (A previous foray into the Japanese market back in the 1970s was a flop.)


China is also on IKEA's list for expansion. The company operates four stores there and plans to open several more over in the coming years. IKEA is under pressure from cheaper Chinese household goods suppliers there.


IKEA operates nearly 30 stores in the US, and plans to add three to five stores a year here. In mid-2006 IKEA opened its first Michigan store in Canton. A new store is slated to open in Portland, Oregon is the spring of 2007; IKEA's second store in the Pacific Northwest. IKEA's US stores account for about 12% of the company's sales. (Germany is IKEA's biggest market, accounting for17% of sales in fiscal 2006.)


IKEA mails about 175 million catalogs in 27 languages each year.


IKEA's sales have been growing thanks to expansion of its store network and price cuts; the retailer reduced prices by 3% in fiscal 2005.


IKEA's manufacturing arm, The Swedwood Group, makes wood-based furniture and components at 36 factories and sawmills in nine countries. In 2007 the company plans to spend about $60 million to build a second furniture plant in Romania.


To house all its furniture, the Swedish furniture king has begun selling prefabricated homes in Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark. The company's BoKlok prefab houses are available in two styles: single-family villas (available only in Sweden), and two-storey timber-frame buildings containing six apartments. To date, IKEA has sold more than 2,500 homes and aims to double sales by 2008.


IKEA, Sweden's largest food exporter, is replacing its non-organic offerings with organic fare, including cheese, coffee, and jams. Following along this green theme, the company will introduce a program in the US (already in place at its other stores internationally, including the UK) to reduce the number of plastic bags used at checkout. Customers will be encouraged to use reusable bags and will have to pay a nickel per plastic bag; the proceeds will be donated to an environmental group.




At the age of 17, Ingvar Kamprad formed his own company in Sweden in 1943, peddling fish, vegetable seeds, and magazines by bicycle. He called the company IKEA, an acronym for his name and the village in which he grew up (Elmtaryd, Agunnaryd). Four years later he added the newly invented ballpoint pen to his product assortment and started a mail-order catalog.


In 1950 Kamprad added furniture and housewares to his mail-order products, and in 1953 he bought a furniture factory and opened a small showroom. The showroom was a hit with price-conscious Swedes and was replaced by the first official IKEA store in 1958. The first store outside Sweden was established in 1963 in Norway. Two years later the company opened its flagship store in Stockholm, a 150,000-sq.-ft. marvel whose round design was inspired by the Guggenheim Museum in New York. The store featured a nursery, a restaurant, a bank, and parking spaces for 1,000 cars. By 1969 two more stores were opened in Sweden and another in Denmark.


A fire badly damaged the Stockholm store in 1973, but the subsequent fire sale pulled in more shoppers than the store's grand opening. That year IKEA expanded beyond Scandinavia, opening stores in Switzerland and Germany. In 1976 it opened its first store outside Europe, in Canada, and during the late 1970s and early 1980s, it entered Australia, the Canary Islands, Hong Kong, Iceland, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore. To avoid questions of succession after his death, Kamprad in 1980 transferred ownership of the company to a charitable foundation. IKEA opened its first US store, in Philadelphia, in 1985. Anders Moberg was named president of IKEA in 1986. By 1991 there were seven outlets in the US and 95 total in 23 countries. IKEA began its push into Eastern Europe two years later, but at the same time struggled with economic downturns in its major markets, Germany and Scandinavia.


Kamprad's reluctant announcement that he had associated with pro-Nazi groups in the 1940s and 1950s brought a torrent of bad press. The revelation prompted IKEA to reconsider opening a store in Israel, believing the Israeli government would not sanction the investment. Instead, Jewish groups claimed the company was deliberately avoiding the country. IKEA agreed in 1995 to open an Israeli store and finally granted a license for a franchise to Blue Square - Israel Ltd. in 1997.


That year IKEA announced plans to build about 20 plants over five years in the Baltics, Bulgaria, and Romania, a move designed to reduce its dependence on contract manufacturers and nearly double its own manufacturing capacity. Also in 1997 it began offering prefab housing in Sweden with construction firm Skanska.


IKEA opened its largest store (400,000 sq. ft.) outside Europe in Chicago in 1998 and announced plans to open more stores in Russia, China, and Eastern Europe. In 1999 Anders Dahlvig was named group president, replacing Moberg, who left to take a position with retailer Home Depot. In 2000 the company opened its first store in Moscow, with plans for more Russian locations.


In 2001 IKEA stated plans to open 60 to 70 more store locations in Europe, North America, and Asia over the next five years. Since June 2002 IKEA has run its own freight trains between depots in Sweden and Germany, and the company plans to extend its rail services to Italy and Poland and to double its rail transport of goods to 40% by 2006. In December 2002 IKEA Netherlands received a letter with a bomb threat and temporarily shut down 10 of its retail locations. Explosives were discovered in two stores in the Netherlands and detonated; two IKEA employees were minimally injured. Federal authorities confirmed that the motive behind the attacks was extortion.


In 2004 IKEA opened its first store in Portugal and stores in Russia outside the metro areas of Moscow and St. Petersburg. The Swedish home furnishings group opened 18 new stores in fiscal year 2005 (15 in Europe and three in North America). The following year IKEA added 16 new stores worldwide, including its first in Japan in April 2006


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