Swedish furniture giant Ikea has begun construction on its first Indian retail store that will come up in Hyderabad with an investment of about ₹700 crore.
The store will occupy 400,000 square feet in HiTec City in Hyderabad, stocking over 7,500 furniture and home furnishing products, and featuring a massive restaurant for 1,000 people serving Swedish and Indian cuisine.
Ikea expects that about 50 per cent of its workforce will be women, and it will directly hire at least 500 employees, Mintreported. The store's roof top will be covered by solar panels to provide 3,000 kilowatts for its energy needs. Preeti Budhraja, Ikea's country customer relations manager, has said the site will be a zero wastage facility with water recycling.
It's second store will come up in Mumbai. The company is also considering a production facility in India as part of its plans to target the mass market in India. The local production facility will help it cut down on logistics costs – which are a big part of what would make Ikea furniture an affordable bet for the Indian market, and potentially disrupt a number of expensive furniture retailers.
Ikea plans to open 25 stores across Indian cities with a planned investment of ₹10,500 crore, according to media reports. Ikea operates 328 stores across the globe.
Ikea has been sourcing products from India for a while now and expects to ramp up its sourcing efforts, said Juvencio Maeztu, Chief Executive officer of IKEA India. The company also plans to own the land of its retail sites, instead of leasing.
"We want to be our own landlord and then, we are here for many years," Maeztu told media.