Ikea buys London shopping centre to launch first small UK store

By Henry Saker-Clark, PA City Reporter

Ikea has bought a London shopping centre where it will also launch its first UK small format store.

The Swedish retail giant’s property arm has snapped up Kings Mall Shopping Centre in Hammersmith for £170 million as the company moves forward with a strategy to develop mixed-use sites around urban stores.

It said it will install a new style of smaller store in the West London shopping centre, which it plans to open in spring 2021.

The acquisition by Ikea’s Ingka Centres property arm marks the “next step” in its strategy to move further into city centres despite current pressures on the UK high street.

The Ikea Store in Wembley (PA)

Peter Jelkeby, country retail manager and chief sustainability officer at Ikea UK & Ireland, said: “Our plan to open a new city centre store in Hammersmith is an exciting next step as we continue to respond to people’s evolving shopping habits, making Ikea more convenient than ever before.

“People have been eager to see our affordable range and access our life-at-home expertise on the high street for some time, so we’re excited to introduce a unique Ikea store to the vibrant local community in Hammersmith and London.”

The opening will take Ikea’s London store portfolio to six sites, having launched its latest store in the city in Greenwich last year.

Ikea also launched two London planning studios last year under its plan to develop new formats for inner city locations.

The retailer said the new mall store will include more than 2,000 home furnishing accessories.

Ikea already has a handful of smaller inner city store elsewhere in Europe, including sites in Paris and Moscow, but Hammersmith will be its first smaller UK shop.

Gerard Groener, managing director at Ingka Centres, added: “Our urban projects are all about getting closer to more people.

“More of our customers are living in cities than ever before, and a regenerated Kings Mall will be an ideal location for reaching millions of Londoners.”