Ikea stores owner Ingka acquires supply chain software firm


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Dive Brief:

  • Ingka Investments, the investment arm of Ikea’s franchisee Ingka Group, has acquired Made4net for an undisclosed sum, the retailer announced Wednesday.
  • Ingka Group will deploy Made4net’s technology across its stores to update its fulfillment and omnichannel operations. With Made4net’s technology, Ikea can speed up its deliveries, accurately fulfill orders and better manage its supply chain, according to the press release.
  • Made4net will continue to operate as an independent subsidiary from its New Jersey headquarters and six international offices. CEO Duff Davidson and the company’s leadership team will remain on staff.

Dive Insight:

Ingka’s Made4net acquisition appears to be part of Ikea’s efforts to streamline its supply chain. In April, the company announced plans to invest more than $2.2 billion in its U.S. omnichannel growth strategy. That funding will go toward strengthening its fulfillment network as well as opening eight new stores, nine plan and order stations and 900 pickup locations.

The investment in its omnichannel strategy could better position it to compete with home decor rivals like Wayfair.

“Ikea has historically been somewhat ineffective at integrating store and warehouse inventories in a manner that makes shopping online and in-person a seamless experience,” Hart Posen, the Richard G. and Julie J. Diermeier professor in business at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said in an interview with Retail Dive earlier this year.

Ingka Investments acquired Made4net after a two-year holding period set forth by Thompson Street Capital Partners, which invested an undisclosed sum into the company in January 2021. Ikea will integrate Made4net’s SCExpert platform into its fulfillment centers and stores across more than 31 countries, according to the announcement.

“Our business currently requires a better fulfillment operations system with more accurate data that better supports handling for our customers,” Tolga Öncu, head of retail at Ingka Group, said in a statement. “Our goal is to become leaders of life at home, serving more people in an omnichannel reality, whenever and however customers choose to meet us.”

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