The furniture retailer Ikea has announced global sales of almost 5.3 billion US dollars in 2015, an increase of over 11% on the previous year.
Its success has been put down to how it meticulously researches each market prior to entry and how it adapts its products for each market.
For example, before it entered the South Korean market, its market research found that many people in the country have a special fridge especially for kimchi, a type of vegetable dish. It therefore designed a kimchi fridge specifically for this market.
Similarly, prior to entering the Australian market, it found that facilities to charge their smartphones near the bed was something that many Australians really wanted. In response, Ikea developed a bedside table with a built-in charger.
Its Australian stores also stock outdoor furniture throughout the year, rather than just for a few months in summer as is the case in Europe.
An Ikea spokesperson commented on the company's dedication to conducting thorough market research prior to entering a country, describing it as “incredibly important”.