Ikea sees record sales in Romania, announces expansion plans
The only Ikea store in Romania reached sales of EUR 115 million without VAT in the catalog year ended August 31, 2016, up by 21.2% compared to the previous year. The Swedish furniture retailer will open a new store in Bucharest by the end of 2018 and plans to expand to Timisoara, Brasov, and Cluj-Napoca in the following years.
“This financial year, the Ikea store in Bucharest had record sales and brought a solid growth for Romania and IKEA SEE region. This is firstly due to the Ikea online order service growth, which was above our expectations,” said Stefan Vanoverbeke, Country Retail Manager Ikea South East Europe.
The company has also made progresses with its expansion plans. The opening of the second store in Bucharest is estimated for the end of 2018. The store will be the company’s biggest in the region, with a surface of 36,000 sqm, and will require an investment of some EUR 80 million, including the land cost. The store will be located in eastern Bucharest close to the A2 highway.
“Moreover, Timisoara, Brasov, and Cluj-Napoca are the next three cities in which the opening of new stores in Romania is a priority for Ikea South Europe,” Vanoverbeke said. The company’s property and expansion team is currently looking for suitable land plots in these cities.
The first Ikea store opened in Romania in March 2007 in the Baneasa commercial area. The store was initially owned by Romanian investor Gabriel Popoviciu, who also owns the Baneasa Shopping City mall. Popoviciu sold the store to Ikea group in March 2010.
Some 3.2 million people visited the Ikea store in Baneasa, northern Bucharest, between September 1, 2015 and August 31, 2016. Another 6.6 million unique visitors accessed the ikea.ro website. Ikea sold 17.3 million products in the same period, 80% of which were furniture items.
The number of online orders went up by 140% compared to the previous year, to 104,000. Most online orders came from Bucharest, Cluj, Timisoara, Iasi, and Constanta.
The Ikea food department, which includes the Ikea restaurant – one of the biggest in Romania, the bistro, and the Swedish delicacies shop, had sales of EUR 7.2 million without VAT, up 7.4% compared to the previous year. The food sales represented 6.3% of IKEA’s total sales in Romania.
Moreover, the Ikea store in Bucharest sold almost 300,000 Almondy cakes, the most of all Ikea stores worldwide.
Ikea Romania has 569 employees, half of whom have been working in the company for more than 5 years, which means they also qualify for Ikea’s private pension plan. Almost half of the employees are women. In May 2016, the company increased the minimum gross salary of its employees by 47% compared to December 2015, to RON 2,000 (EUR 445). Moreover, IKEA employees get holiday bonuses worth EUR 200 net and the company also covers their monthly transport costs up to EUR 33.