There have been rumours for over a year that IKEA could be in the market for launching a marketplace. They would continue to sell their own products but would also enable third party retailers to list and sell on their platform and there’s a rumour they could be interested in Marktplaats.
This time last year they were talking about a collaborative platform with CEO Torbjorn Loof the marketplace route was of interest:
“What are the opportunities between the dominating, big, global platforms, and the company website? I think there are tons of opportunities. Like Zalando: they’re a kind of platform for fashion and clothes. I think it’s a very interesting area to explore. You like to control your own destiny so in that sense if you have the size and the possibility that’s true. I think in the next five, 10 years, we will see what we now call the platform developing.”
– Torbjorn Loof, CEO, Inter IKEA (Feb 2019)
Now, we’ve heard a whisper in the industry that IKEA could be interested in picking up Marktplaats. It’s no secret that the eBay owned platform in the Netherlands is up for sale, as indeed is the entire eBay Classified group of companies and if IKEA are looking for a ready make marketplace with an engaged audience it’s not a bad call – Marktplaats is the most popular classifieds site in the Netherlands and whilst not a true marketplace would give IKEA a platform to build on that could be rolled out in other countries.
File this one as a rumour for the moment, but look out for more whispers on the grapevine over who could be interested in snapping up eBay’s group of Classified businesses. eBay have indicated they’ll have news on any potential buyers (and if they’re going to sell eBay Classifieds which seems likely) by the middle of the year.