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How it took more than 12 years for world’s biggest furniture retailer to open a store in India

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Ikea’s 12 year-long wait is marked by an intensive & extensive mapping of the Indian market along with overcoming investment barriers.

It’s taken Ikea, the world’s biggest furniture retailer, more than 12 years to open a store in India. Here’s a look back.

1 June 2006:

Ikea says it’s studying the Indian market and would like to be there in five years if foreign ownership regulations change.

10 April 2008:

Ikea says it’s interested in entering India, though local laws allowing only 51 per cent foreign ownership are hampering the company’s plans.

11 June 2009:

Ikea postpones plans to enter the market after talks with the Indian government on foreign direct investments fail.

1 Jan 2012:

India’s government abandons a rule against foreign single-brand retailers operating stores without a local partner, paving the way for global companies including Ikea.

22 June 2012:

India’s commerce ministry says Ikea may invest 600 million euros (about $700 million) in the country.

20 Nov 2012:

India’s Foreign Investment Promotion Board approves Ikea’s proposal to open stores in India.

21 May 2016:

Ikea announces purchase of land for a 400,000-square-foot store in Navi Mumbai, on the city’s eastern outskirts, and plans to open 25 stores in India by 2025.

13 Sept 2016:

Ikea says it’s started construction of its first store in Hyderabad and is also looking for land in cities such as Delhi and Bangalore.

7 Dec 2016:

Ikea says it expects to open a Hyderabad store toward the end of 2017.

18 May 2017:

A customer rests on a bed in Ikea in Beijing. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

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.

31 May 2017:

Ikea announces purchase of 14 acres of land in Bengaluru for a third store in India, which is anticipated to have 5 million visitors per year; it’s also scouting for sites in Delhi, Chennai and Pune.

1 Sept 2017:

Times of India reports Ikea will invest 8.1 billion rupees ($120 million) in its Bengaluru store.

2 Nov 2017:

Ikea announces the purchase of 10 acres of land in Gurugram (formerly Gurgaon) in the National Capital Region outside Delhi from the Haryana Urban Development Authority, and plans to build a 400,000 square-foot store with parking for 1,000 cars and a restaurant seating 1,000 people.

22 Nov 2017:

Ikea opens an experiential center in Hyderabad’s Forum Mall to showcase products that will be sold in its soon-to-be-opened store, including Swedish and Indian delicacies that will be offered in its planned restaurant; says second India store will open in Mumbai in 2019, followed by Bengaluru and Delhi.

6 Dec 2017:

Ikea announces plan to hire more than 14,600 people in India by 2025 and says half of them must be women. The plan includes 500 to 700 staff for each of its stores slated for Hyderabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru and the National Capital Region. In addition, 171 existing employees will each receive an extra 150,120 rupees ($2,185) contribution to their pension fund.

13 July 2018:

Ikea postpones the planned Hyderabad store opening to 9 Aug from 18 July and says it may look at opening smaller format stores in cities like Mumbai and Delhi due to space constraints and higher realty costs.

9 Aug 2018:

Opens first Indian store in Hyderabad.

A living room displayed inside the Ikea retail store in Hitech City on the outskirts of Hyderabad, India, on Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2018. In a milestone that’s been more than a decade in the making, India’s first Ikea store opened today, bringing inexpensive Nordic-inspired furnishings and food to the worlds fastest-growing middle class. Photographer: Udit Kulshrestha/Bloomberg

– Bloomberg


Also read: With grasp of local preferences, Ikea shows how to tap into international markets


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