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IKEA Named to FORTUNE's 2006 "100 Best Companies to Work For" List for Second Consecutive Year

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IKEA, a leading home furnishings retailer, was recognized among FORTUNE's 2006"100 Best Companies to Work For" list for the second consecutive year. Ranked 96th overall and 35th among mid-sized companies on FORTUNE's ninth annual List, the Swedish employer with 26 U.S. stores increased its U.S. co-worker family by 2,500 last year as a result of its expansion across the country. IKEA is adding three to five stores a year, which has recently provided hundreds of jobs in cities such as Atlanta, GA; Bolingbrook, IL; Frisco, TX and Stoughton, MA. "It's an honor to be recognized in FORTUNE's 100 Best Companies to Work For list for the second year in a row," said Pernille Lopez, president, IKEA North America. "It is always our goal to create a better working environment. We learn a great deal in forums such as this. Along with recognition for what we are doing well, the voice of our co-workers and the achievements of other companies challenge us on where we can improve." As part of its strong commitment to work/life balance, IKEA offers all co-workers family-friendly initiatives and diverse workplace benefits including eligibility for medical, dental, paid-time off, domestic partner/children coverage, generous 401(k) matching, and tuition assistance. Other benefits include: paid maternity/paternity leave and paid time off for child adoption; flexible work arrangements (job share, telecommuting and condensed work weeks); extensive professional development, training and mentoring programs; lactation rooms for nursing mothers; and discounts for weight loss and smoking cessation services. In addition, full-time co-workers are eligible for both short-term and long-term disability. Personal and career growth opportunities were further enhanced in the last year by the addition of a program called Self-Managed Learning, (SML). SML empowers co-workers to take charge of their own development. Working together with peer coaches and a dedicated facilitator, co-workers assess their current position and define learning goals based on their personal development needs. With the group's feedback and support, a "learning contract" is created that specifies the individual's goals, how they are to be achieved and how success will be measured. Support continues through the SML process and a final meeting allows participants to share their successes and learning. For three consecutive years, IKEA has been named to Working Mother magazine's list of "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers," and in 2003 received the magazine's Family Champion award in recognition of the company's family-friendly programs. IKEA employs 9,500 co-workers in the United States and 90,000 globally. "The 100 Best Companies to Work For" list is compiled for FORTUNE by Robert Levering and Milton Moskowitz of the Great Place to Work Institute in San Francisco, based on two criteria: an evaluation of the policies and culture of each company, and the opinions of the company's employees. The latter is given more weight; two-thirds of the total score comes from employee responses to a 57-question survey, which goes to a minimum of 400 randomly selected employees from each company. More than 100,000 employees from 466 companies participated in the survey this year, up from 356 candidate companies last year. It asks about things such as attitudes towards management, job satisfaction, and camaraderie within the organization. The remaining one-third of the score is based on an evaluation of each company's demographic makeup, pay and benefits programs, and culture. Companies are scored in four areas: credibility (communication to employees), respect (opportunities and benefits), fairness (compensation, diversity), and pride/ camaraderie (philanthropy, celebrations). Companies that are at least seven years old and have 1,000 or more employees are eligible for the List. Information about applying for the next list can be found at www.greatplacetowork.com. Since its 1943 founding in Sweden, IKEA has offered a wide range of home furnishings and accessories of good design and function, at low prices so the majority of the people can afford them. IKEA was recently ranked for a second year in a row to FORTUNE's annual "100 Best Companies to Work For" List, Working Mother magazine's annual list of "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers" (three years in a row) and Training magazine's annual "Top 100" ranking of companies that excel at human capital development (three years in a row). IKEA currently has more than 225 stores in 33 countries, including 26 in the U.S. Other store locations being planned include: Brooklyn, NY; Canton, MI; Draper, UT; Dublin, CA; Portland, OR; Round Rock, TX; Somerville, MA and West Sacramento, CA. IKEA is recognized as a socially responsible company, and continuously supports initiatives that benefit causes such as children and the environment. To visit the IKEA Web site, please go to http://www.IKEA-usa.com. For information about working at IKEA, visit http://JobsAt.IKEA-usa.com.

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