IKEA was founded in 1943 by Ingvar Kamprad and the first store (including a show room) was opened in Almhult, Sweden in 1958. Since then, IKEA has developed a strong concept and product range around home furnishing articles, focused on function, quality and low price.
Currently, there is a grand total of 229 IKEA stores in 33 countries / territories, and the company's turnover reached 14.8 billion euro in 2005. More than 400 million people have visited IKEA stores world-wide. The IKEA catalogue had a total of 160 million copies printed in 52 editions and 25 languages.
IKEA was set up in Malaysia in 1999 with its distribution centre being the regional hub for the company's Asia Pacific market to its 16 stores in seven Asia Pacific countries.
"Malaysia has been chosen for its central geographical position in Asia and it's well developed logistics network and port infrastructure" says Vic Kurzeja, General Manager for IKEA's Distribution Centre Malaysia. "We found in Malaysia a stable and reliable business and social environment which enables us to focus on our long term expansion goals".
Today, IKEA's distribution centre, with a 130,000 pallet storage capacity employs circa 220 co-workers. The key element of the company's logistics network and strategy is to develop its market share in the Asia Pacific in the coming years.
IKEA will continue to develop and optimize its logistics hub in Malaysia by implementing Radio-Frequency technology in 2007 to monitor the company's inventory flow and continue to invest in the development of local competence.
Malaysia's ethnic diversity and well educated workforce has enabled IKEA to find the suitable manpower to meet the company's human resource requirements.