Ikea shoppers can now collect orders from three Tesco outlets in Cork, Louth and Kildare

The Swedish flat-pack furniture giant is to trial collections over summer. Photo: Mac Innes Photography

John Mulligan

IKEA shoppers will be able to pick up their orders from three Tesco stores in Ireland from this week.

The Swedish retail giant also plans to roll out the new Collect Near You trial service to six other Tesco locations around the country later in the summer.

The three initial locations where customers will be able to collect their orders are Mitchelstown in Co Cork, Drogheda in Co Louth and Naas in Co Kildare.

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Ikea said it plans to establish additional collection points at Tesco store car parks in Limerick, Galway, Waterford, Tipperary and Wexford, and another in Cork, in the coming weeks.

The trial will last for six months and is part of a pilot programme that was launched in the UK last year.

When shopping on the Ikea website, shoppers will be able to select a Tesco location to pick up their purchases. As with Tesco’s own grocery collection service, the Ikea orders can be collected in the Tesco car park. The service will be free for orders worth more than €200. A €15 collection fee will apply for orders under that value.

The pilot programme is part of a broader effort by Ikea to broaden the availability of its goods to customers around the country. It operates just one store in Ireland, on Dublin’s northside. It is the busiest Ikea store in the world. It also has an outlet in Belfast.

Ikea recently announced that it will open a huge distribution centre in Dublin next year. It expects to use the facility to make more than 300,000 deliveries in the first year of operation, with the figure almost doubling to nearly 600,000 within five years. It will be able to deliver up to three million items a year and will stock 8,000 products from the Ikea range. That is more than 80pc of its entire catalogue.

The retailer has also been opening so-called “plan and order stores” around the country in order to provide additional accessibility to its products for customers without them having to visit the Dublin store.

Jakob Bertilsson, Ikea’s country customer fulfilment manager for Ireland and the UK, said the ongoing trial in the UK has been extremely successful. He said the range of goods people are willing to collect also surprised the retailer.

“We’ve been quite surprised at the orders,” he told the Irish Independent. “When we opened collections in the UK, we expected [people to collect] medium-sized furniture, but actually we see everything from kitchens, sofas to beds and everything coming through.”

Mr Bertilsson said that while Ikea already delivers orders around Ireland, the convenience of a click-and-collect service is important as shoppers don’t need to schedule being at home to make sure they receive a delivery.

“After the summer, we will have a quite clear perspective if this continues or not,” he said. “I’m very positive. We have a lot of customers that are travelling to Dublin. This is an opportunity for them to shop more than just occasionally, when they have a much more affordable solution on their doorstep.”