After 12 long years Ikea is finally opening its first store in India

Image Source: Adweek

Aug 9, 2018

Ikea is finally opening its first store in Indiaon 9th August, after 12 years of planning and decisions. The world’s largest furniture retailer is all set to open its Hyderabad. This is the first of 25 it plans to open in India by 2025.

The first Ikea store is a 13-acre complex in Hitec City on the outskirts of Hyderabad. The showroom will display some 7,500 products and nearly 1,000 of which would sell for less than Rs 200 apiece. Ikea expects six million customers in a year.

The Ikea teams had visited over 1,000 homes in India with varied income levels and lifestyles to understand their needs and dreams before finalising around 7,500 varieties of home furnishing items to be made available at its India stores.

Ikea expects its restaurant business to drive higher footfalls at its stores in India, a sharp contrast to other markets where customers flock in to buy its popular ready-to-assemble products. The Hyderabad store will have a 1,000-seater restaurant, Ikea’s biggest globally. Chicken will replace Ikea’s trademark beef and pork meatballs, in deference to Indian cultural preferences.

Ikea’s most menu will consist of vegetarian options, including idli and sambar, samosa and vegetable biryani, sourced from about 25 vendors, mainly women-led social enterprises.

The global furniture giant also plans to start e-commerce operations from Mumbai next year. It plans to offer online sales in cities where it can support them with fulfillment, delivery and assembling services.

Ikea calls internally its restaurant or food business the best sofa-seller as it takes time to buy furniture, so we need food for people to stay. In India, for every customer on the cash counter, we will have one paying at the restaurant, too. That’s nearly 50% of the customers as Indians love food,” Patrick Antoni, deputy country manager at Ikea India.

IKEA sees potential to set up large or small format stores in at least 49 Indian cities with a population of more than a million each over the years. After Hyderabad, Ikea will open stores in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Pune, Chennai and others.

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