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Ingvar Kamprad's Pride & Joy
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Ingvar Kamprad, the Swede who founded furniture retail chain IKEA, has overtaken Microsoft's Bill Gates as the world's richest man, Swedish TV news reported on April 4, 2004.
SVT2 television said Kamprad, 77, has a personal fortune of 400 billion crowns ($53 billion).
Gates's fortune is put at $47 billion, according to the latest list of the world's rich in U.S. Forbes magazine, SVT2 said.
In 1943, when Ingvar was 17, his father gave him a gift for succeeding in his studies. The gift was used to establish his own business. The name IKEA was formed from the founder's initials (I.K.) plus the first letters of Elmtaryd and Agunnaryd, the farm and village where he grew up. IKEA originally sold pens, wallets, picture frames, table runners, watches, jewelery and nylon stockings—whatever Ingvar found a need for that he could fill with a product at a reduced price.
When Ingvar Kamprad outgrew his ability to make individual sales calls, he began advertising in local newspapers and operating a makeshift mail order catalog. He distributed his products via the county milk van, which delivered them to the nearby train station.
In 1947, furniture was introduced into the IKEA line. The furniture was produced by local manufacturers in the forests close to Ingvar Kamprad’s home. The positive response was gratifying, and the line expanded.
The founder of IKEA saw the opportunity of becoming a furniture provider on a larger scale. He soon made the decision to discontinue all of the other products and focus directly on low-priced furniture, and the IKEA that we know today was born.
Kamprad, known for frugal habits such as flying economy class, lives in Switzerland and no longer takes part in the daily running of IKEA, but has kept ownership of the company with more than 180 stores in over 30 countries in the family.
Thank you to the IKEA website for the preceding historical information. Now go find the cache!
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Last Updated: on 11/15/2017 3:57:58 PM (UTC-08:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada) (11:57 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum