IKEA tables increased turnover, seeks Internet expansion

Czech sales of Swedish furniture giant Ikea have climbed by nearly 10 percent in 2016. The biggest player on the Czech furniture market posted sales of 9.3 billion crowns, which is an increase of 9.0 percent on the previous year. The sale of kitchen furniture has been the fastest segment to grow this year.

Photo: IKEAPhoto: IKEA Over 11 million customers visited Ikea’s stores in the Czech Republic this year. The Swedish chain currently has four stores around the country, two of them in the capital and one each in Brno and Ostrava. On average, visitors spent 1,535 crowns during every visit.

In June, the Swedish furniture launched a provisional on-line shop in the Czech Republic, establishing external pick-up points to enable easier and faster shipment of orders. Since September, customers have also had the possibility of goods delivered to their door.

“Since the launch of our e-shop, we have recorded over 3,000 orders. Their number keeps gradually increasing. At the moment we get around a 100 orders a day,” the e-commerce manager of Czech Ikea, Nina Maláková, told the daily Hospodářské noviny.

Within two years, the Swedish furniture chain plans to launch a regular e-shop in the Czech Republic, which is currently being tested in Great Britain.

Ikea has also been considering smaller stores where people could only chose and order their goods. Similar facilities are already operating in Germany, Spain, and Austria.

“We keep adding new services, such as the possibility to return unused goods that have already been assembled,” Marek Fettl, the head of Ikea for the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary, told the daily in an article run on Thursday.

On-line shopping currently accounts for about 2.5 percent of Ikea’s overall sales in the Czech Republic. Ikea expects that figure to reach 4.0 percent by the end of the year and hopes to raise it even further to around 10 percent in the future.

Ikea saw record profits also in the previous year. Its sales in 2015 accounted for nearly 8.5 billion crowns and its profit rose by more than 50 percent on the previous year to 600 million crowns. At the moment, more than 50 percent of the country’s furniture market is controlled by the six largest furniture retailers: Ikea, XXX Lutz, Jysk, Asko Nábytek, Sconto Nábytek and Kika.

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