Ikea to launch budget hotel chain in Europe
Thursday 16 August 2012
Best known for its budget flat-pack furniture, Scandinavian retailer Ikea is planning to launch a chain of budget hotels in Europe.
The property division of Inter Ikea — the company that owns the Ikea intellectual property rights — is planning hotels in 100 locations across Europe. The first two hotels are expected to open in Germany in 2014. Other locations earmarked for hotels include Belgium, the Netherlands, the Nordic countries, Britain and Poland.
"We're aiming to spread all over Europe," said Harald Muller, a Brussels-based business development manager of Inter Ikea's property division.
Although the chain won't use Ikea's name or furniture, it will engrain the Ikea philosophy of "good quality at a reasonable price," he said.
"Aside from that, guests won't really recognize Ikea in it at all," he told The Associated Press, but added the hotels will have a Scandinavian "feel" because the interior will be made by Nordic designers.
Inter Ikea, which already owns a handful of hotels in Europe since the start-up of the property division in the 1990s, will work with another company to operate the chain. Muller declined to reveal the name of the hotel chain, but it is expected to be released in an official announcement in September.
Ikea, the world's largest furniture retailer, employs 131,000 people in 41 countries and its 287 stores drew in 655 million customers in 2011. It has a complex corporate structure where the ownership of Ikea's outlets is separated from the ownership of its brand name and intellectual property rights.
The company has branched out from its traditional role of furniture store before. In the late 1990s, its retail store arm formed a joint venture, BoKlok, together with Swedish construction group Skanska AB to build affordable flat-pack housing.
Earlier this year, the Ikea Group announced a collaboration deal with Chinese consumer electronics firm TCL under which it would start selling TV's and sound systems integrated into Ikea furniture.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
New era of cheap oil 'will destroy green revolution'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits record low as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Ukip founder Alan Sked and Nigel Farage 'begged Enoch Powell to stand as a candidate'
iJobs Money & Business
£32000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manage...
£Neg. (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: A Finance Account Manager with...
£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity h...