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Ikea to open first New Zealand store in Auckland

Ikea Southeast Asia - Retail in Asia

Ikea will open a store New Zealand in the coming years, opting for the city of Auckland to bow its debut store.

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The Swedish firm, known for its buy-and-assemble furniture, will open up a pop-up shop in the coming months in the lead up to a fully-fledged flagship store, which would create 400 jobs in the city, according to local media reports

With no an exact time frame for the megastore launch, Ikea’s New Zealand manager, Will Edwards, said that Ikea would open a pop-up shop in central Auckland, as a physical store would take a number of years to set up.

“It does take time to build a truly big blue and yellow iconic Ikea store, it will take a number of years to get the full offer up and running but we don’t want to keep people waiting,” Edwards told media on Friday at a press conference, which also saw the attendance of Ikea’s global chief execute, Jesper Bodin.

“It makes sense to be in Auckland where many people are living and also commuting in and out of. We’d like to give a piece of Ikea before the full meal comes along,” added Edwards.

Ikea requires some 300 to 400 employees to run the Auckland store, as well as several hundred more staff to support logistics.

Bodin said that New Zealand will get the “whole shebang”, with a product range of about 7000 items at least in the warehouse store.

While price-points weren’t disclosed, Bodin said that “our ambition is always to be affordable for people and competitive with other retailers in New Zealand.”

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Ingka Group, Ikea’s largest franchisee and operator of Ikea stores in 30 markets around the world, was granted exclusive rights to explore options to expand into New Zealand.

Founded in 1943 in Sweden, Ikea sells furniture and homewares to 1.2 billion customers around the world.