MANILA – IKEA Philippines on Wednesday said it has been exploring Filipino homes since 2016 to gauge the market's needs and in preparation for the opening of the world's biggest branch at the Mall of Asia complex later this year.
IKEA Philippines is "on track" to open in either Q3 or Q4 this year, the local unit of the Swedish furniture maker earlier said.
"We've always been fascinated about people’s lives at home. So we ask how they live their life at home. This helps us do what we do—create modern furniture design that helps people to not just survive at home, but thrive,” IKEA Pasay City store manager Georg Platzer said in a statement.
“This fascination helps us to better understand people’s needs, dreams, and challenges, especially for the new markets we enter,” he added.
IKEA discovered that some Filipinos live in ancestral homes with several generations together in one roof while some families live with their children – highlighting that home is not just a physical space “but the people they share it with,” it said.
Many Filipinos have also turned to small living spaces as a starter homes with rising property costs and diminishing land spaces, IKEA said. There are also Filipinos who love to DIY their homes, including those that live in condominiums.
Stories of Filipino homes can be viewed in IKEA's "Life at Home in the Philippines" page.
By continuing to explore how Filipinos live at home, Platzer said IKEA hopes to learn what Filipinos need for their dream home.
“The four dimensions that help us define home are: the people we live with, the things we own, the amount of space we have, and the place we live in,” Platzer said.
IKEA said it would open its first Philippine branch later this year but no updates have been disclosed on whether or not the timeline was affected by the recent COVID-19 lockdown.
Furniture shoppers were abuzz when photos of the almost finished iconic blue and yellow store facade earlier went viral on social media.
Sales of home improvement centers as well as e-commerce firms are evidence that the COVID-19 pandemic, work-from-home set up and online learning have prompted Filipinos to fix and renovate their homes.