IKEA designs and sells ready to assemble furniture. It’s a Dutch company founded in Sweden in 1943 by 17 year old Invar Kamprad. Now, the company has more than 330 stories in 38 countries. IKEA ranked 96 in Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2006. The company became involved in social initiative. In February 2009, UNICEF announced that IKEA has become the agency’s largest corporate partner, with commitments of more than $180 million.
During sixty years, IKEA developed not only more than 12000 products (listed on his website) but was concerned to obtain a good environmental performance. (PVC was eliminated from packaging, the use of formaldehyde and chromium was minimized and more).
Even he was a successful businessman during his entire activity, Ingvar Kamprad intrigued with some aspects of his biography. Directly involved as a young man in the pro Nazi Swedish Movement, he affirmed later, in 1994: “this was the greatest mistake of my life.” Another controversial problem was the use of the forced labor of political prisoners by the company during 1980s, in East Germany.
The actual decision of Ingvar Kamprad is not however to retire. He wants to continue be active providing ideas and spending time in the stores and in the factories.