IKEA tackles high taxes to keep low prices in Indian shoppers

Vastavam web: IKEA is looking to keep prices even lower in India than it typically does elsewhere when it opens its first store in the country on Thursday, overcoming high taxes on imported goods as it woos cost-conscious shoppers unaccustomed to DIY furniture. Over a decade since floating the idea of Indian expansion, the Swedish retailer will finally mark its entry with a 400,000 square foot (37,160 square metre) store in Hyderabad, where it will sell 1,000 items including cutlery and stuffed toys for less than 200 rupees ($2.91).

The firm previously said raising the proportion of locally sourced materials would help it overcome import duties which would otherwise make it challenging to keep prices low.Group Chief Executive Jesper Brodin, at a news conference on Wednesday, said India will become one of IKEA’s biggest sourcing markets in the future. At present, its top suppliers are China, Poland and Italy. IKEA’s newly launched India website showed popular products at lower prices than in the United States, for instance. The white variation of its best-selling Billy bookcase is cheaper by a fifth and the dark-grey Ektorp sofa is priced 30 percent lower.