All the furniture in my house was bought in Ikea. All the furniture of most of my friends places are bought in Ikea. Probably my neighbour has all his furniture bought in Ikea.
Unfortunately, at least in Europe, Ikea is the best (and in many cases the only) option when you want to have reasonable quality cheap furniture. The problem is that nowadays all the homes are looking the same.
I like to think that Ikea is one of the main soul destroyers of the 21st century. Before you would visit people and admire their cabinets, sofas and beds. Now you visit someone and discuss the price of the piece that was bought and how easy or difficult was it to carry and assemble it. Instead of talking about the history of an object we are trying to guess its name – Expedito, Billy, Malm…
Our houses are becoming a copy of each other. Having old things is not cool and that beautiful cupboard that has been in the family for three or four generations has to be put in the basement because it won´t fit with the standard Ikea models.
A lot of people don´t know, but Ikea has a very complicated and mysterious ownership model in order to avoid taxes navigating on the borderline of legality. I could try to explain if I could understand exactly how the scheme works. Basically (please note I might be wrong!), Ikea stores are owned by Ikea Netherlands holding that is registered as a non-profit organisation – this allows the group to pay almost no taxes on profit. There are also claims that this Ikea Netherlands holding transfers a lot of money to an Ikea Luxemburg holding… Maybe someday I will try to find out more on how this is set up. I am sure there is nothing illegal in this, but it is ethically very discussable.
On the other hand I like the Ikea restaurant, not the restaurant but the meatballs with fries and jelly. I usually ask for the small one. It is nice that I can keep on tasting the meatballs for the rest of the afternoon because of how difficult they are to digest – burp burp.
I hope someday to be able to have a home where no Ikea furniture will be used. I know this is impossible because it will be very expensive as Ikea destroyed most small competition. For now I will just enjoy my soulless Markus chair like millions of people around the world.