Ikea leaves 11,700 Irish customers with no goods

Swedish giant blames impact of Brexit and Covid-19 for supply chain disruption

Ikea has blamed Brexit and Covid-19 for disruption to its supply chain as 11,700 customers in Ireland were left waiting for orders. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

Ikea has blamed Brexit and Covid-19 for disruption to its supply chain as 11,700 customers in Ireland were left waiting for orders. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

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Furniture giant Ikea has blamed Brexit and Covid-19 for disrupting its supply chain as 11,700 Irish customers were left waiting for goods they had ordered from the store.

Customers in Ireland say their orders have been cancelled, with the company blaming interruption to its supply chain. The Swedish retail giant, which has stores in Ballymun and Carrickmines in Dublin, has apologised to customers .

It admitted deliveries have been affected by Brexit and the pandemic. But, despite customer claims, it says it has not “fully cancelled any orders”.

“In total 11,700 customers have been affected, of which 60 per cent will be minor delays,” a spokesperson said.

One customer, who ordered goods from the store at the beginning of January, was informed by email earlier this week she would not be receiving her delivery. It was sent days after the goods had been due to arrive. The customer in Dublin, said payment is being reimbursed but she is disappointed.

The email from Ikea stated: “We’re sorry to have to tell you that something went wrong with your order… Unfortunately, the items on your order are no longer available and we do not have a future supply date for the stock.

“Regrettably, we have therefore had to cancel your order… A full refund will go back on your payment card within the next 14 days.”

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Another customer said: “An online order from Ikea was cancelled because the delivery didn’t arrive at the expected date. I called them and they advised me to cancel and recreate the order.

She said she was told that the distribution centre for Ireland is in England and that it is suffering inventory problems and other delays.

A third customer said she had paid €2,000 for furniture only to be informed later that it was “in a port somewhere…”

Ikea said it was now working with its supply chain to increase product availability, capacity and the number of suppliers sending goods to Ireland.

“Our global supply chain, including the ports and goods terminals, where products are received have been impacted by the cumulative effects of Covid-19 and our product availability has been impacted as a result,” a spokesperson said.

She added that changes in regulations, as a result of Brexit had exacerbated delays “out of our control”. All shipments originally scheduled for delivery between January 5th and 17th, had been affected, the group said

“These continue to be extraordinary times and we apologise unreservedly for the inconvenience caused to our customers.

“We want to assure them that we are working harder than ever to resolve these challenges, investing millions of euros in our systems, in our services and in our people.”

Ikea said it was working to improve its systems so that it could provide customers with better information, adding that it had boosted numbers in customer support by 30 per cent.

“We appreciate our customers’ patience and would like to thank them for their continued support.”

Ikea said it has witnessed “unprecedented demand” during the pandemic as people were forced to live and work at home. Bedroom furniture, home office and kitchen equipment had seen the strongest demand and that had “impacted availability”, the spokesperson said.