Ikea, the Swedish furniture and design giant, has hinted that it is considering opening standalone cafes and restaurants.
In an interview with Fast Company magazine, Michael La Cour, IKEA Food Business managing director, said that “I hope in a few years our customers will be saying, ‘Ikea is a great place to eat—and, by the way, they also sell some furniture”.
La Cour’s comment comes on the back of a number of changes the company has made to its food division, which has increased Ikea’s food sales by around 8% annually, with sales rising from $1.5bn in 2013 to $1.8bn in 2016.
La Cour said that c30% of Ikea Food customers head to a store just to eat.
Changes made under La Cour include streamlining supply chains, reducing waste with new data analysis tools, and expanding the menu with healthier choices like the chicken and vegan Swedish meatballs introduced in 2015.
The retailer has already completed a few pop-up restaurants in Europe and Fast Company said it was currently looking into creating dining establishments in urban centers that are separate from its typically suburban furniture store.