With IKEA, we share not only the vision, but also the values
In 1943, a brilliant entrepreneur called Ingvar Kamprad, founded a small company in the county of Småland, southern Sweden. He called it IKEA, and he hoped it would help him accomplish his vision: “to create a better everyday life for the many people”.
As the company thrived, Kamprad opened more and more stores around the country, making home furnishing the core of his business. But he soon realised that, if he wanted to fulfil his vision, he could do much more.
So, in 1973 a shopping centre was built next to the existing IKEA store in Sundsvall, Sweden. The idea was that it would, not only drive visitation to the store, but also cooperate with other partners to strengthen the offer. As the demand for more shopping centres grew, it became clear that another business connected to IKEA would be developed.
And that’s where we came to help. From the small centre in Sundsvall (which, by the way, is still there and going strong) we’ve travelled a long way. After a big success in Sweden, in the 1990s we developed our first centres in Poland, followed by other European countries up to our latest opening in Croatia in 2018. In 2002, we went all the way to Russia, and in 2014 we headed to China.
We haven’t always called ourselves with one single name through the years, and it wasn’t until 2015 that we became a unified entity, but one thing is for sure: today we are Ingka Centres and we still work hard to create a better everyday life for the many people.
Togetherness is at the heart of our culture. We are strong when we trust each other, pull in the same direction and have fun together.
We believe in empowering people. Giving and taking responsibility are ways to grow and develop as individuals. Trusting each other, being positive and forward-looking inspire everyone to contribute to development.
We want to be a force for positive change. We have the possibility to make a significant and lasting impact – today and for the generations to come.
We’re not like other companies and we don’t want to be. We like to question existing solutions, think in unconventional ways, experiment and dare to make mistakes – always for a good reason.
As many people as possible should be able to have access to a number of spaces, facilities and services. We constantly challenge ourselves and others to make more from less without compromising on quality.
We see leadership as an action, not a position. We look for people’s values before competence and experience. People who ‘walk the talk’ and lead by example. It is about being our best self and bringing out the best in each other.
A simple, straightforward and down-to-earth way of being is part of our Småland heritage. It is about being ourselves and staying close to reality. We are informal, pragmatic and see bureaucracy as our biggest enemy.
We are constantly looking for new and better ways forward. Whatever we are doing today, we can do better tomorrow. Finding solutions to almost impossible challenges is part of our success and a source of inspiration to move on to the next challenge.