Ikea to open first South American stores

Ikea aims to open at least nine stores in Chile, Colombia and Peru in the next decade along with online sales channels for the three nations. (AFP)
Updated 18 May 2018
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Ikea to open first South American stores

STOCKHOLM: Sweden’s Ikea, which revolutionized affordable furnishing for households, is to expand its flat pack offers to South America for the first time.
The group announced on Thursday that it aims to open at least nine stores in Chile, Colombia and Peru in the next decade along with online sales channels for the three nations.
Inter Ikea Group’s chief executive Torbjorn Loof said in a statement that partnering with the Chilean department store and retail company Falabella “will give us the speed we need to be more accessible to the many.”
The two companies on Thursday signed an agreement which secured Ikea franchise rights in all three countries.
The Swedish giant is also exploring expansion opportunities in Mexico where it opened an office in April 2017.
Founded in 1943, the brand currently operates 418 stores in 49 markets.
Listed on the Santiago Stock Exchange, Falabella operates 494 stores, 42 shopping centers and employs more than 100,000 people in Chile, Peru, Colombia, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil and Mexico.


Gulf countries strengthen oil coordination amid tensions: Kuwait

Updated 20 May 2019
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Gulf countries strengthen oil coordination amid tensions: Kuwait

  • ‘It is normal amid this escalation that Kuwait and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries take these steps’
  • Kuwait was in ‘constant contact’ with its ally, the US

KUWAIT CITY: Kuwait’s deputy foreign minister said countries in the Gulf have strengthened coordination to provide oil to global markets amid increased regional tensions.
“It is normal amid this escalation that Kuwait and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries take these steps,” Khalid Al-Jarallah told reporters late Sunday on the sidelines of a Ramadan sit-down organized by the Iraqi embassy.
“There is cooperation and coordination between Kuwait and the Gulf countries to provide guarantees for oil tankers and continuous supply of energy to global markets.”
Jarallah’s comments come days after sabotage attacks against tankers in highly sensitive Gulf waters and the bombing of a Saudi pipeline — the latter claimed by Iran-aligned Yemeni rebels.
Both attacks targeted routes built as alternatives to the Strait of Hormuz, the conduit for almost all Gulf exports.
The US Fifth Fleet headquartered in Bahrain said the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council began “enhanced security patrols” Saturday in international waters, in “tight coordination with the US navy.”
Iran has repeatedly threatened to close the strait in case of war with the United States, which earlier this month announced it was sending an aircraft carrier and strike group to the region.
Kuwait’s deputy foreign minister said “tension was escalating quickly” but he remained hopeful.
He added Kuwait was in “constant contact” with its ally, the US.
On Saturday, OPEC giant Saudi Arabia called for urgent meetings of the GCC and the Arab League to discuss recent “aggressions and their consequences” in the region.
The two summits are scheduled to be held in Makkah on May 30.
Jarallah welcomed the kingdom’s invitation, saying Kuwait was keen to take part in discussions on issues “potentially dangerous” to the region.