Huge crowds throng IKEA on first day of opening

Preceded by much hype, IKEA, the Swedish furniture conglomerate, opened its third store in India in Bengaluru, as large crowds gathered on Wednesday to take the first look.

Some were for storage and others for kitchen supplies. Some just looked around to see what the hype was about. A few people said they skipped work to check out the store.

Some were there following recommendations from family and friends, such as Prashant Menon. “My sister-in-law who lives in the US insisted that I visit the store. I came here looking for some lighting to decorate our new home,” he said.

There were also those who wanted to see if the store is better than those in other cities. Ashwini Tallur said “I wanted to know how different it is from the one I’ve seen in Switzerland”.

Who visited IKEA Bengaluru on day 1 and why?

IKEA, the Swedish home furnishing brand, opened its largest store in India on June 22, 2022, in Nagasandra, next to the metro station, in Bengaluru. † Video credits: Adithi Holla & Ann Maria James

The shop in Nagasandra, inaugurated by Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, houses more than 7,400 products and has sought to localize production with a range of Indian-made utensils and wooden sofas adapted to the demands of the Indian market. IKEA plans to increase local sourcing to more than 50% in the long term, said Anisha Agarwal, IKEA Karnataka’s Marketing Manager.

Indians are not usually used to assembling furniture, but at IKEA more than 90% of the store is filled with do-it-yourself furniture. For those who don’t want to assemble it themselves, they can opt for on-delivery assembly at a reasonable price, said Francisco, IKEA Customer Relations and Market Services Manager.

Meanwhile, in partnership with Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (BMRCL) proposed to build a bridge connecting the store to the Nagasandra metro station by the end of the year, Ms Agarwal said.

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