Ikea, the Sweden-based global furniture retailer known for its frugal and efficient products, is likely to open its third mega store in India in Bangalore around April.
IKEA’s India CEO Peter Bezel said the company is on track to open its first store in Bangalore in ‘early summer’, which will make Bangalore the third city to get such a store after Hyderabad and Mumbai.
The company had bought 14 acres of land in Nagasandra on the Tumkur road from Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation more than four years ago.
The opening of the mega store in Bangalore will be followed by the unveiling of a smaller, city format store “not so long after”, Bezel said in an interview with business news channel CNBC TV18. He was speaking on the occasion of the opening of the company’s first small format store in India in Worli in Mumbai.
With the Worli store, the iconic Swedish furnishing retailer has taken its total physical outlets in India to three, including the Navi Mumbai mega store opened in December of last year.
IKEA began its expansion into the Indian market with its first large store format in Hyderabad in August 2018. The sprawling store soon broke several records, including for the highest amount of in-store food consumed.
True to its Scandinavian roots, IKEA focuses on function, utility and efficiency over looks and grandeur — which has helped it create a strong affinity among customers looking for value-for-money furniture that is also sturdy, useful and comfortable at the same time. Scandinavians, due to their historical struggle against the elements in an icy geography, are renowned for their no-nonsense, utilitarian approach to problem solving.
On IKEA’s plans in India, Bezel said his company will continue to focus on both the smaller format as well as the traditional, sprawling format.
Mumbai, for example, will get yet another ‘city store’ within the next 12 months, while the Bangalore expansion too will be a mix of both.
The small format store, like IKEA’s online store, will offer the entire range of furniture available with IKEA India, but with limited inventory for immediate take-away.
The products that are not available for immediate take-away can be ordered in the store, and will be delivered to the home. Unlike a pure online model, the city store format allows the customer to touch and feel the item before making up his or her mind.
For those who are located outside these cities, customers can also order IKEA products online if the delivery address is located in Pune, Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara or Bengaluru at present.
Bezel hinted that more cities would be added to the above list. “We are long-term committed to India and want to reach 200 mln people by 2025 and 500 mln in another five years,” he said.