Ikea India: Here's what Indians say about the new store in Hyderabad

Marco Green
August 9, 2018

After 12 long years of planning and six year after it made an announcement, Ikea is finally opening its first store in India. Jesper Brodin, the Global CEO of Ikea, stated, "Ikea was keen on offering affordable products and efforts are on to cater to thinner wallets". The restaurant will serve mainly vegetarian dishes, and their hallmark beef and pork meatballs have not been included, respecting India's culture and tradition.

The store was opened amidst cheerful Ikea management and staff with the ribbon cutting by a customer.

The store will house a 1,000-seater restaurant, IKEA's largest and possibly India's largest restaurant, a cafe which will offer coffee, bakes, frozen yogurt and many more for purchase.

May 18, 2017: Ikea predicts doubling its sourcing from India to 600 million euros by 2020 and says it will open its first Indian store, in Hyderabad, in early 2018; breaks ground on Mumbai site and says it will invest about 10 billion rupees ($146 million) in the country. "Our products will be inspiring, affordable, and convenient for Indian customers".

Brodin said that with Ikea's second attempt at Indian stores the retailer, which has 355 stores across 29 countries, has given Ikea's business model a local twist, to try to attract a large middle class not used to a company expecting its customers to assemble the products themselves.

IKEA officials reportedly visited over 1000 homes of various sizes belonging to different income groups to understand the needs and aspirations of Indians.

With over 7,500 items that will be up for sale in IKEA's store, including around 1,000 items that will be sold for just under Rs 200, IKEA says it wants customers to "have some energy boost halfway through" their shopping sprees.

Ikea, which has stores in 49 countries, has a mixed global range with the local needs and realities.

The Swedish company is investing $1.5 billion in India as it bets big on luring a rising middle class away from local furniture makers.

But analysts warn that profits won't come quickly or easily. "We found love for homes is very big in India".

"I was excited and happy that Ikea is coming to India for the first time, and that too in Hyderabad", said Abhishek Chapalamadugu, a tech worker who was introduced to Ikea when he lived in the United States a few years ago.

"I will certainly visit the store soon, probably at the weekend. Let's see what they bring here", G. Kumar, a marketing executive, told AFP.

According to a Redseer Consulting report, the home furniture industry is a $25 billion market altogether, of which $250 million is online.

IKEA is harping on affordability to capture the Indian market, which is known to be price sensitive. "We've been looking for a sofa, outside they cost 15,000 or 16,000 rupees ($233), but in here I saw one for only 11,000 ($160)".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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