No pandemic pause in IKEA’s U.S. shopping mall plans
IKEA’s shopping centres business hopes to open the doors of its first mall in the United States, in the centre of San Francisco, within a year, pushing ahead with its expansion plans while many retailers are reeling from the coronavirus crisis.
Ingka Centres, one of the world’s biggest mall owners, told Reuters in May that it was looking to enter the United States, with a focus initially on locations in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago.
General manager Gerard Groener said on Monday the pandemic had not changed Ingka Centres’ expansion plans: “Modern physical retail needs to be built around local community needs, a complementary mix of uses, digitalisation and sustainability.”
“Whatever the ‘new normal’ looks like demand for meeting, shopping and leisure outside the home will remain, and this is demonstrated by the high level of footfall we have seen at our meeting places that have reopened following COVID-19 restrictions,” Groener added.