The founder of furniture giant IKEA has died, aged 91

Laura Christensen
January 29, 2018

While IKEA's furniture is known for its "quintessentially Swedish" designs, Kamprad moved the company's production unit to Communist-era Poland in 1961 to take advantage of the country's cheap labour costs.

Kamprad also was the founder of Ikano, and an global group of companies operating in finance, insurance, real estate and retail fields.

Sweden's royal house, politicians and business leaders are praising the work and entrepreneurial spirit of IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad, who died at age 91.

Kamprad announced his retirement in 1986 (his three sons run IKEA now), but continued travelling to his stores and making major decisions.

For decades, the company seemed to be thriving under his watch, as it avoided controversy and seemed to instill in its employees a near-fanatical devotion to Kamprad.

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Kamprad, a man who has made his mark on homes across the globe, was worth $58.7bn, but shopped in flea markets. The founder of Ikea, as well as a bank for its customers, Ikano, "was "surrounded by his loved ones", and died "following a short illness".

The IKEA Group's president, Jesper Brodin, said Kamprad's "legacy will be admired for many years to come and his vision - to create a better everyday life for many people - will continue to guide and inspire us". His activity in the group was extensive enough that, in the same year Kamprad formed Ikea, Sweden's state police began investigating him and speculated that he held a leadership position in the organization.

The European Commission previous year launched an investigation into ways IKEA allegedly used a Dutch subsidiary to avoid taxes, with the Green Party contending the company avoided $1.2 billion in European Union taxes between 2009 and 2014. A great entrepreneur who helped bring Sweden into the world. Last time it was in Vietnam, ' Kamprad explained.

The first two initials may be a slight giveaway - they stand for his name Ingvar Kamprad (IK). His father was a German-born farmer, and his mother was a Swedish homemaker. At the tender age of five, he started selling matches to his nearby neighbours and by the time he is seven, he commenced selling further afield, using his bicycle.

The company released a statement on Kamprad's death on Sunday morning. "He really left an indelible imprint on retail and on consumers' lives".

Other reports by My Hot News

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