Company Name: IKEA
Founder: Ingvar Kamprad
Industry: Home Products
IKEA is an international retailer of Scandinavian-style furniture and other home products. The company name is actually an acronym encompassing the initials of the founder’s name, Ingvar Kamprad, and his childhood home Elmtaryd, Agunnaryd.
Founded in 1943, IKEA initially consisted of only one person and sold magazines, vegetable seeds, and fish. In 1947, the company released its first mail-order catalog.
In 1950, Kamprad steered the direction of the company into the home furnishings industry when he added furniture and other home items to the array of products. By 1951, an expanded version of the catalog was released, and in 1952, the home furnishings segment of the company solidified when many customers were attracted by the items’ low prices and high quality.
In 1953, the furniture segment was further developed when Kamprad bought a small furniture manufacturer. Success followed and IKEA eventually was headquartered in Älmhult, had a giant showroom and had increasing number of consumers.
In 1963, the company expanded and began selling outside Sweden when a Norway site was opened. It was in the 70s and 80s when IKEA took on the rest of the world, with new offices in the US, the UK, France and Italy. At this point, the line of furnishings and furniture brands were still expanding.
Over the next couple of decades, the company continued to grow. Today, IKEA has over 230 stores in 40 countries/territories worldwide.
Mikael Ohlsson – President
Hans Gydell – President International IKEA Group