Ikea TV coming to a store near you
The furniture company synonymous with Sweden, Ikea, will start selling TV's and sound systems built into some of its furniture. By far the world's biggest furniture maker, Ikea already sells large kitchen appliances, but this is the company's first step into the home electronics branch.
The new furniture offering is called UPPLEVA, the Swedish word for "to experience". Ikea says one goal is to hide the mess of cables that plague the modern day living room.
"We have big hopes for this. I think we can get in and create a new market, a new way to purchase home electronics for your living room," says Toga Öncu, the head of Sales for Ikea Swede, to news agency TT.
Ikea will launch the furniture with built in electronics in five countries this June. By 2013, the company plans to sell the furniture globally.
"It's a branch where for the most part, the majority of the actors aren't doing so well," says Jonas Arnberg, a consultant at HUI Research, who admits Ikea's entrance into this market was unexpected.
However, Arnberg thinks Ikea has an uphill battle. "If it's possible for Ikea to underestimate something, this might be it. This is a really tough branch to be in."