October 15, 2012

Ikea’s $2bn retail plans in India step further as sourcing norms ease

Sweden-based furniture retailer Ikea’s retail plans for India have stepped further, with Indian government relaxing some conditions on overseas investment in single-brand retail segment.

By Prasanth Katam

Sweden-based furniture retailer Ikea’s retail plans for India have stepped further, with Indian government relaxing some conditions on overseas investment in single-brand retail segment.

The retailer has now completed filings as part of its recently announced plans to invest about INR107bn ($2bn) to open retail stores in the country, reported livemint.com.

Ikea Group president and chief executive Mikael Ohlsson said in a statement, "After 25 years of sourcing many Ikea products in the country, Ikea Group has, as of end June this year, submitted its application to start retail operations in India and has filed the final document this week in accordance with the amended policy".

In September 2012, India has relaxed sourcing clauses and brand ownership norms on foreign direct investment (FDI) in single-brand retail, which paved the way for overseas firms make convenient foray into the country.

Earlier, the policy requires all the foreign companies to mandatorily source 30% of material from small Indian businesses.

The group is developing a concrete plan to set up Ikea stores in India, which it expects would generate investment and new employment, the news agency reported.

"At the same time, we will continue to increase our sourcing in India from both existing and new suppliers, building on long-term relations and shared values," Ohlsson added.