Swedish furniture retailer Ikea, which is scouting for the right location for its India stores, is reportedly in talks with the Uttar Pradesh government to open its first store in Greater Noida.
Even though the Samajwadi Party-led state government is against FDI in multi-brand retail, it has reportedly welcomed Ikea's single-brand investment with open arms and is ready to provide land at Greater Noida for Ikea with the necessary infrastructure to build on.
According to a report in Indian Express,officials of Ikea India met state principal secretary for infrastructure and industrial development, Surya Pratap Singh on Wednesdayto set up their "first integrated unit for furniture manufacturing and selling,".
The company officials are expected to visit Noida and Greater Noida early next month to see evaluate the infrastructure and identify an appropriate site.
For each store the company plans to acquire around 12-17 acres of land. The outlets will include a showroom, a market hall, a self-service warehouse along with a restaurant, the report added.
However,the company is expected to take at least three years to open a store from the time of identifying a location. So, the first IKEA outlet in India is not expected before the end of 2016.
Currently, the biggest priority for Ikea is to find the right location for its stores at the right price in major cities, with easy access to public transport (metro) and good road network.
In August, IKEA CEO Mikael Ohlsson had informed Union Minister for Commerce & Industry Anand Sharma that the Swedish furniture major has identified four states - Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Karnataka - to set up its stores.
The firm has proposed setting up 10 furnishing and homeware stores as well as allied infrastructure in over 10 years in India.
Subsequently, it plans to open 15 more stores.
The government had allowed Ikea to run cafes and restaurants within its single brand stores in India, but it cannot sell packed food items. It can sell food and beverages at its restaurants or cafes located within its stores.
The government on May 2, 2013 approved Ikea's Rs 10,500 crore proposal for setting up home furnishing stores in the country.
As on date, the Swedish retail major's investment is the largest in the single-brand segment ever since the government allowed 100 percent foreign investment in this sector last year.
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Updated Date: Dec 20, 2014 23:37:54 IST