Today Ingka Group, the largest IKEA retailer, opened its first planning studio in Australia, in west Melbourne. In the coming months, the retailer plans to open a series of new IKEA planning studios in several markets, including in Australia, Switzerland, Norway and Canada.
The planning studio format – also known as IKEA plan and order point in some markets – is launching for the first time in Australia on 29 September and in Switzerland, on 3 October. In other markets, such as Norway and Canada, the retailer is expanding with new planning studio locations in the coming months.
The new Australian planning studio will focus on kitchens and wardrobes, offering customers one-to-one planning with experts, with the full IKEA range available to order. At around 350 sqm it is a fraction of the size of an IKEA store, located inside the new IKEA location at Highpoint Shopping Centre, Melbourne’s largest shopping centre in the city’s west.
“We are on a journey to bring IKEA closer to our customers. Our IKEA planning studios are part of making IKEA more accessible by offering free planning and design advice to help our customers create their dream kitchen, bathroom or wardrobe. With locations inside shopping centres or other popular places, our planning studios also bring IKEA physically closer to our customers,” says Tolga Öncü, Retail Operations Manager, Ingka Group.
In Norway, the retailer plans to open four new planning studios in Arendal, Porsgrunn, Sarpsborg and Haugesund. In Canada, the retailer is expanding its network of planning studios (known as IKEA plan and order points in Canada) with a new location in Kitchener.
“A new kitchen is a big investment for most of us – even with affordable IKEA prices. Most customers want to touch the different kitchen fronts, feel the different handles in their hand, and so on and this is what we offer in most of our planning studios. These new locations complement our stores, in a location even more convenient to them, helping our customers live a better life at home and create their dream spaces,” says Tolga Öncü.
Ingka Group is investing to ramp up its network of planning studios globally, as part of its already announced 3 billion EUR investment in new and existing locations.