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28 Jan, 2018 10:49

5 facts you may not know about late IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad

5 facts you may not know about late IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad

The founder of popular Swedish furniture chain Ikea, Ingvar Kamprad, has died at the age of 91 following a short illness, the company has announced. RT looks at 5 peculiar facts about the man behind the furniture giant.

The business magnate was born in Pjatteryd in Smaland province, southern Sweden.

The entrepreneur founded what would become the world's largest furniture retailer in 1943 at the age of 17.

Kamprad was the eighth richest man in the world, with a total net worth of $58.7 billion according to Bloomberg.

“We are deeply saddened by Ingvar’s passing. We will remember his dedication and commitment to always side with the many people. To never give up, always try to become better and lead by example”, CEO and President of Inter IKEA Group Torbjörn Lööf said.

5 facts about the man who founded IKEA

1. Ingvar Kamprad was extremely frugal, insisting on buying only second-hand clothes and shopping at flea markets.

2. Kamprad’s thrifty nature also extended to transport. He drove an old Volvo for many years, flew economy class for longer distances, and refused to waste money on taxis, using public transport instead.

3. IKEA's iconic – and to non-Swedes unpronouncable – product names were devised in response to Kamprad’s dyslexia. The entrepreneur found it difficult to work with product codes, so instead the company developed names for every single product.

4. The furniture company has grown to a billion-dollar industry giant, but was started by Kamprad when he just 17 years old. The store’s name is an acronym of its founder’s name and hometown: Ingvar Kamprad from Elmtaryd, Agunnaryd.

5. Rather than pay Sweden’s high taxes, according to Forbes, the businessman moved to Switzerland in 1976 but returned to his homeland some 40 years later after tax reforms introduced lower rates. 

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