Ikea to open 50 new stores by December after ‘huge demand’ over lockdown

Ikea to open 50 new stores by December after ‘huge demand’ over lockdown

 

Ikea has announced plans to open 50 more stores by Christmas, after huge demand from people renovating over lockdown.

The Swedish flat pack giant and its franchisees will open a number of new stores worldwide – including in the UK – adding to the 445 stores currently run by the brand.

Ikea’s biggest franchisee said demand was rising after lockdown as people seek to do up their homes.

The chain’s sales fell 4% in the year to August, but bosses said the £36billion figure is much higher than initially expected due to lockdown.

Ikea reopened 19 stores on June 1, making it one of the first major chains to reopen after the government’s mandated closures.

Fans were seen queuing from 5am to get inside, after the chain warned a limited number and only one person per household would be allowed in at a time.

Peter Jelkeby, Ikea’s UK and Ireland chief executive, said: “Health and safety remains our top priority, and that’s why we’ve put in place extensive measures to ensure the safety and comfort of customers and co-workers.

“While the experience might be a little different to before – it’s the same IKEA, with the vision to “create a better everyday life for the many people”, and the ambition to inspire people through our brilliant affordable range and home furnishing advice.  

“Throughout lockdown, we’ve had the unique privilege of being a part of people’s everyday lives at home, and we’re committed to continuing doing whatever we can to support our customers and co-workers on this next part of the journey we take together.”

In June, Ikea said it would repay money it got from state wage support schemes around the world, including in the US and Ireland.

However, it did not include the UK as although the furniture chain furloughed 10,000 UK workers it did not claim back their salaries from the government.

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