IKEA has announced an extreme new anti-theft measure to compete with Walmart and Target.
The Swedish furniture and homewares chain has also announced eight new locations in the United States as part of the company’s $2.2 billion expansion plan.
Ikea currently only has 51 stores open in the United States.
The exact locations of the eight new stores have not been disclosed.
However, San Francisco and Arlington, Virginia will get new Ikea stores later this year.
The San Francisco store is under 24-hour security, the company told The San Francisco Standard.
“The safety of our employees and customers is always a top priority for Ikea. Ikea San Francisco, which will be part of a new Ingka Centers hangout on Market Street, will be manned with a security team at all times,” an Ikea spokesman for the outlet said.
This competes with stores like Walmart and Target, which don’t all offer the same security protections.
The Swedish furniture and homewares store opened its first US location outside of Philadelphia in 1985 in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania.
In addition to the new stores, many existing stores will receive upgrades, the company announced on Thursday.
“The US is a priority market for IKEA,” Javier Quinones, CEO and chief sustainability officer of Ikea US, told Forbes.
“The US is a mature market and at the forefront of retail innovation.
“We believe it’s the right time to invest and get closer to a lot more Americans about what this investment is trying to do.”
Quinones said the new eight stores will have “the full menu of the IKEA experience.”
In addition to the eight new locations, Ikea is also working on opening 900 new pick-up locations.
For existing locations, Quinones said investments are being made to “make shopping at Ikea faster, more affordable and more sustainable”.
The company is also investing in digital innovation, Forbes reported.
“The stores will be the best place to get inspiration for home furnishings,” said Quinones.
“We will do this more and even better in the future, but we will be adding fulfillment capabilities so they will have a dual role in this omnichannel world.
“It is therefore important that we continue to invest in the branches.”