IKEA says that consumer spending is rising globally
FLAT-pack furniture giant Ikea said consumer spending is beginning to recover around the world after reporting record annual profits.
Net profit at the Swedish company, the world's biggest furniture retailer, was a record €3.3bn in the 12 months ending August 2013.
The group, whose Dublin store was its most profitable in Europe in 2011, repeated its target of doubling global sales to about €50bn by 2020.
"Consumer spending is improving in many countries," Ikea chief executive Peter Agnefjall said. "While the challenging economic situation may not be over, there are positive signs.
"Consumers have more confidence, they have started to buy more and open their wallets more," Mr Agnefjaell added at a press conference at the Kungens Kurva store outside Stockholm.
The comments add to recent signs that shoppers are becoming more optimistic in response to improving economies. Euro-area consumer confidence increased more than economists forecast in January, according to figures released last week.
To capitalise on these improving conditions, Ikea plans to widen the range of services it offers customers.
"In big cities, people have more money in their wallets, but less time and want help with home delivery, assembly and installation," Mr Agnefjaell said.
Ikea needs to make consumers more aware of what is on offer as most don't know about the services, Mr Agnefjaell added.