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Inside Ikea's Pivot From Traditional Big-Box To Small Concept Stores

In this series, Make Yourself At Home, we are hearing from members of the commercial real estate industry about how they are managing this new reality and gaining insight into their day-to-day approaches. You can subscribe on iTunes and Spotify.

Angele Robinson-Gaylord

In this episode, we hear from Angele Robinson-Gaylord, the president of the North America Real Estate Cluster at Ikea Group. She speaks here about the Swedish company's workplace culture, her experiences as a Black woman in commercial real estate and the furniture giant's pivot from box retail to smaller concept stores. 

“Our global CEO Jesper Brodin in 2017 announced that we would be focusing on 30 global cities. Everyone is very familiar with the typical Ikea that is out in the suburbs, what we called potatoes fields — [but we are now] recognizing that we have time-pressed lives in our major cities, and people don’t necessarily have time to make that journey,” she said on the podcast.

“In those global cities, [we are trying] to meet those customers in a different way. We have examples of that in Manhattan, we have our planning studio, which, instead of our typical 250K SF to 300K SF store, it’s a 17K SF store.”