New York City IKEA plans to invest $77 million in start-up companies producing eco-friendly products with an eye to eventually adding solar panels and other green goods to its inventory.
The news was reported by Cleantech Group, which said Ikea plans to focus on five areas: solar panels, alternative light sources, product materials, energy efficiency, and water saving and purification. The investments will be made in companies that offer commercial prospects within a four-to-five year horizon, according to Cleantech.
Over the next two years, IKEA plans to work with five or six companies, with a target of bringing the first round of products to market within three to four years, helping the start-ups reduce their prices and develop better products.
IKEA expects to invest in five to 10 companies overall, keeping the portfolio relatively small so it spend a lot of time with the start-ups.