Journal: News & Comment

Friday, August 15, 2003
# 9:29:00 AM:

Minimalist profligacy

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According to the Financial Times, the Ikea catalogue is the biggest free publication in the world. This year, the company will distribute 130 million copies around the globe.

The photos in the catalogue are almost all taken at the world's largest indoor photo studio at Ikea headquarters in Sweden. (It's why even in North America, the catalogue pictures have all those spiffy European TVs in them.) Pretty much every household in Sweden receives a copy, no matter how far they are from an Ikea store—the country's postal system has to hire extra staff to deal with the load.

Apparently, Ikea is also not a publicly-traded company, so it can spend money on vast catalogue distributions that public shareholders might not think contribute to the short-term bottom line.


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