IKEA says it has no plans to shut any of its other small format stores despite its decision — after a three-year pilot — to close its Birmingham unit next week.


The retailer told The Furnishing Report that its Norwich, Aberdeen, Westfield Stratford and Dublin Carrickmines stores — part of the same test store programme as the Birmingham space — were not facing the same threat at this time.

Its comments follow an emailed statement issued announcing the closure next Thursday (Aug. 9) of its Birmingham Central order-and-collect point (OCP) in the Dale End part of the city.

Collectively known as the OCP test programme, the five stores were launched from 2015 as a means of finding out more about how customers want to shop with IKEA in new formats.

"Now the test programme has come to an end, we have taken the learnings to inform the way we evolve and adapt as a business to meet our customers’ ever changing needs," said Julie Carr, IKEA OCP customer experience manager.

"The closure of the Birmingham Central OCP unit has not been an easy decision, but is based on a number of factors including the location of the shop, which we recognise has not been accessible enough to customers shopping in Birmingham city centre."

All 39 employees have been offered positions in nearby IKEA stores.

The retailer will this autumn embark on a fresh pilot, opening its first high street store when it opens in the former Multiyork showroom on London's Tottenham Court Road. Other high street stores will follow as part of that test.

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