As the whole world already knows, the IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad has died at the age of 91. IKEA is the paragon of the global players in the wood industry and perhaps the only representative who deserves this qualification. This company continues to expand its commercial presence in the world, while developing a vertical integration that extends from the forest to the house. Even though the founder had already retired from operational activities for ages, he retained some form of control of his empire. It can not be said that the major developments in IKEA in recent years have been against his will.
IKEA's presence and impact in the global wood industry is so diverse, and this market player is so knowledgeable about consumer-centric communication, that it is hard to find something similar in the wood industry. For 2016, IKEA estimates a total of 15.75 million m3 of processed roundwood, mainly pine, beech, birch, spruce and acacia. Over the decades, IKEA has become a major forest owner and is now the first private owner of forests in Romania. IKEA has also become a major player in primary processing, notably in Poland, the group's main production division in Europe with a 27% share. The site of Stalva Wola alone transforms 400 000 m3 of roundwood and is the largest Polish sawmill.
IKEA aims to market 100% of its FSC-certified wood products by 2020. This is a significant level, and IKEA prides itself on having contributed to the FSC certification with a staggering 35 million hectares of forests in the world. This leverage was reaffirmed as part of the Vancouver declaration.
The three sons of the founder have been in charge for a long time. One can bet on the fact that IKEA, with or without its founder, will continue, if not to change the face of the world, at least to print a deep, though discreet, mark on the future of the wood industry in the world.