Ikea will be cutting 150 jobs, some of them in the Belgian and Dutch branches as well. The plan is part of a major reorganisation effort to help prepare the furniture giant for the growing competition of large e-commerce players.
Support functions only
Ikea Group announced yesterday that it will be cutting 150 jobs, mainly in Sweden itself. Some forty positions would be made redundant in Belgium and the Netherlands as well, although no exact numbers are known at present: “We are yet to commence negociations,” says Ikea. The furniture giant does confirm that only support functions are targeted, among other things in human resources, marketing and communication.
“Nothing will change for the Belgian Ikea stores or the Winterslag distribution centre,” stresses Annelies Nauwelaers, spokeswoman for Ikea Belgium. With this intervention, Ikea Group mainly hopes to maintain its lead over Amazon, which launched two furniture brands of its own last November, but also over Indian Flipkart and Germany-based Otto and Home24. Ikea may have been reluctant to get involved in the e-commerce business, but the furniture company is now making up for lost time by investing heavily in developing its digital services and building distribution centres for e-commerce.
In the three years to come, Ikea Group is planning to pour over 3 billion euros in its internal organisation, with smaller-sized city stores and more extensive online services which wil help the company become not only more flexible, but also more ‘in sync’ with today’s customer.