We’ve all been wondering who could possibly fill the humungous multi-level space on the corner of London's Oxford Circus, previously occupied by former Arcadia Group’s Topshop. But the wait is over with Swedish giant IKEA set to buy the fashion retailer’s late flagship store.
And the mammoth space comes with a hefty price tag. The furniture company is reported to have bid £378 million for the premises which includes seven floors of retail and office space, including NikeTown and Vans.
The store will sell around 5,000 products – 2,200 of which will focus on home accessories and items that are easily transportable. But if carrying home a flat-pack wardrobe on the tube doesn’t sound overly appealing, the entire furniture range will be available for home delivery, too.
Now for the question we all really want to know: will we be able to purchase plates of their prized meatballs at the Oxford Circus site? Yes, indeed. The store is set to feature an on-site restaurant for customers to indulge in their favourite IKEA dish, as well as hot dogs, waffles, gratin potatoes and soft-serve ice cream. Further details about what form the store's food offering will take haven’t yet been released, but we anticipate the restaurant to be big. Let the queues commence!
The acquirement of the central London space is part of IKEA ’s new business strategy which will see the group move away from larger outlets on the outskirts of cities to more stores in city centres to reflect people's changing shopping behaviours. The idea is to make its stores more accessible to a broader range of people.
Peter Jelkeby, country retail manager and chief sustainability officer at IKEA UK & Ireland, said: "Even though online shopping continues to accelerate at a rapid pace, our physical stores (large and small), will always be an essential part of the Ikea experience – as places for inspiration and expertise, community and engagement."
The store is set to open in Autumn 2023.
In other foodie news, we've rounded up everything you need to know about MasterChef: The Professionals 2021