Swedish furniture retailer IKEA is all set to open its first store in Hyderabad next month and a second one in 2019. IKEA India deputy country manager.
What is the level of localisation in the Hyderabad store?
We have localised for solutions, not for the products. IKEA has hired 150 employees for assembling products and will stock 7,500 products of the total of 10,000 worldwide. The experience rooms have been built keeping in mind the space. In Sweden, bedrooms are used only for sleeping and storage but here they also serve other purposes — watching television for instance.
Half the menu will consist of Indian food, the rest Swedish. That helps keep people in the store.
Will products be cheaper than in stores globally?
We are offering competitive prices in India; around 1,000 products cost less than `200 and are used daily. We aim to cater to everyone who walks in. Keeping price sensitivity in mind, we will focus on volumes.
What is the kind of sales growth you envisage from the Indian market?
The Indian economy has a young population and is growing. Any retailer who offers products that are value for money cannot go wrong. Indian customers are very similar to those in Malaysia, Indonesia and China culturally and buying habits are similar. India’s growth may be uneven but no one believes that India will not grow.
You have large-format stores of 350,000 sq ft to 400,000 sq ft. When will smaller stores of 100,000 sq ft to 150,000 sq ft-be opened?
Right now we are focusing on opening stores in Hyderabad, Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru. The small-format store is mainly for Mumbai and Delhi, where real estate costs are very expensive and finding such big areas within the city is difficult.