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IKEA Orlando To Open In Fall 2007

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IKEA, a leading home furnishings retailer, expressed its appreciation to the Orlando [FL] City Council for the body’s approval of a proposed IKEA store in Central Florida – increasing the Swedish retailer’s planned presence in Florida and the Southeastern U.S. This City Council approval today follows the Municipal Planning Board’s recommendation last month to approve plans for the store. Pending permits, construction of the future IKEA Orlando can begin later this year, with an anticipated opening in Fall 2007. Until then, customers can shop at IKEA Atlanta, which opened June 2005, or online at www.IKEA.com. In addition, a store is slated to open Summer 2007 in the South Florida city of Sunrise. “IKEA is thrilled and honored at the support voiced by the Orlando City Council in favor of our opening a store in the area next year,” said David Iemolo, real estate manager for IKEA. “While we already knew many in the area were IKEA customers, the outpouring of interest since we announced our plans – plus this approval by the City – makes us feel so welcome.” The plan approved in an unanimous city council vote allows IKEA to build a 309,000 square-foot store, with its 1,200 parking spaces, on 22 acres off Eastgate Drive, south of Conroy Road, across from the southeastern end of The Mall at Millenia. The future IKEA Orlando will reflect the same unique architectural design for which IKEA stores are known worldwide. Besides offering nearly 10,000 exclusively designed items, IKEA Orlando will feature three model homes, 50 room settings, a supervised children’s play area, and a 300-seat restaurant serving Swedish specialties such as meatballs with lingonberries and salmon plates, as well as American dishes. Other family-friendly features will include a ‘Children’s IKEA’ area in the showroom, baby care rooms, preferred parking and play areas throughout the store. Lemolo continued, “We are glad to contribute to Orlando’s reputation as a retail destination, just as much as it already is an entertainment one. Beyond the jobs and tax revenue IKEA will generate, we are pleased the City recognizes our commitment to become an active community member.” In addition to jobs created during the construction phase, approximately 400 coworkers will join the IKEA family when the new store opens. There currently are more than 235 IKEA stores in 34 countries, including 28 in the U.S., where the company plans to open three to five stores a year. Other U.S. stores are being planned in: Brooklyn, NY; Draper, UT; Dublin, CA; Portland, OR; Round Rock, TX; Somerville, MA; and Sunrise, FL. 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 has been ranked in FORTUNE’s annual “100 Best Companies to Work For” List (two years in a row), 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 (four years in a row). IKEA incorporates environmentally friendly and socially responsible efforts into day-to-day business, and continuously supports initiatives that benefit causes such as children and the environment. To visit the IKEA Web site or for information about working at IKEA, please go to http://www.IKEA-usa.com.

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