Retail

India-Based Interior Design Startup Livspace Scores IKEA Investment

IKEA

A popular interior design startup in India, Livspace, has received an investment from Ingka Investments, the venture capital arm of IKEA, according to reports.  

Last year, Livspace secured investments from Goldman Sachs and TPG Growth, among others. The company acts as an all inclusive interior design service that wants to take the hassle out of interior design by connecting homeowners with designers and the supply chain. It includes 3D renderings of possible renovations, online meetings and even customized furniture. The collaboration allows for cost savings all around, the company says.

Ingka Investments operates about 90 percent of IKEA’s retail footprint, and Livspace Co-Founder and CEO Anuj Srivastava did not provide a figure about the size of the investment. He did say that the stake is a minor one and there were no plans to add a larger number to this funding round.

“There is strong strategic and commercial potential,” said Srivastava, who used to work at Google and started Livspace in 2015. “This is an opportunity to create the best possible omnichannel experience for consumers.”

Retail companies looking to expand into India generally have a tough go of it, but IKEA has had some recent successes in the country. The company opened its first store in Hyderabad and recently won FDI approval to operate retail stores in the country. It plans to open about 25 more.

The Livspace model resonated with IKEA, Srivastava said, and the companies began to talk around the announcement of the Livspace Series C round in September.

“We’ve felt the natural synergy always existed,” he said. “This is an extremely strong endorsement of our vision.”

Srivastava said that although he wants the company to expand, business in India is booming.

“The India business is keeping us really, really busy at this time,” Srivastava said. “We’re engaged in exploratory activities but there’s no immediate plan or timeline.” He said he doesn’t expect a new market launch until at least another year has passed.

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