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Ikea drops plans for giant Malmö logistics hub

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Ikea drops plans for giant Malmö logistics hub
Ikea's store in Malmö. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
17:12 CEST+02:00
The Swedish furniture giant Ikea has dropped plans to build an e-commerce distribution centre in Malmö, in a blow for the city's plans for a logistics park in its former northern harbour.
The planned centre was expected to bring as many as 200 much-needed low-skilled jobs to the city. 
 
"It turned out that we could instead use our existing stores as e-commerce distribution centres, because we have sufficiently large capacity," said Lena Herder, country head for Ikea in Sweden. "It's also more cost-effective and at the same time will mean shorter delivery times for customers." 
 
The decision comes a year after Ikea signed a land allocation agreement with Malmö's city government for 50,000 square metres in the developing Norra Hamnen (Northern Harbour) area. 
 
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Ikea last November announced plans to cut 650 jobs in Sweden, 220 in Malmö, 250 in Helsingborg, 100 at the company's headquarters in Älmhult, and 80 elsewhere in the country.
 
These jobs are part of cutbacks of 7,500 globally. But the company plans later to hire some 11,500 employees globally who will work in its planned new city shops, and on home deliveries and kitchen installation. 
 
"Within three years our customers are going to see a new Ikea, with an expanded service offering and access to to our competence in interior decoration," Herder said. 
 
She said she didn't expect any further job losses in Sweden as a result of the change in strategy, and predicted that new jobs would be created in the company's digital and logistics arms.
 
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