Ikea to open in Oxford Street after buying flagship Topshop store

27 October 2021, 08:21 | Updated: 27 October 2021, 08:33

Naomi Bartram

By Naomi Bartram

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IKEA is buying the former flagship central London store of Topshop for £378m after it shut earlier this year.

Ikea is buying the former flagship store of Topshop in London for £378m after the collapse of Arcadia.

The huge retail space on Oxford Street will be turned into a furniture store as part of Ikea’s plans to open inner-city outlets.

It is a whopping 239,000 square ft made up of seven floors and also houses NikeTown and Vans, who will stay as tenants.

The site will host one of Ikea's smaller stores in a bid to target shoppers who are less able to travel to the large, edge-of-town stores.

Ikea is trying out new smaller inner-city store
Ikea is trying out new smaller inner-city store. Picture: Alamy

Peter Jelkeby, retail manager of Ikea UK & Ireland, said while online sales are soaring, there is still a strong demand for more local physical outlets.

"Even though online shopping continues to accelerate at a rapid pace, our physical stores - large and small - will always be an essential part of the Ikea experience," said Mr Jelkeby.

"Bringing Ikea to the heart of Oxford Street is a direct response to these societal shifts and an exciting step forward in our journey to becoming more accessible."

Under new plans, the store is set to open in autumn 2023 and will focus on home-furnishing accessories, with the full range available to buy for home delivery.

Topshop's flagship store was closed at the start of 2021
Topshop's flagship store was closed at the start of 2021. Picture: Alamy

A conditional purchase contract for the space has been signed, with final details expected to be completed in January.

This comes after the Arcadia Group went into administration in December last year, with 13,000 retail jobs put at risk.

The retail company - owned by Sir Philip Green - consists of high street stores including Topshop, Dorothy Perkins and Burtons.

Arcadia chief executive Ian Grabiner said at the time it was an "incredibly sad day" and that the company had been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

He said: "This is an incredibly sad day for all of our colleagues as well as our suppliers and our many other stakeholders.

Topshop was bought by ASOS in March 2021
Topshop was bought by ASOS in March 2021. Picture: Alamy

"The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic including the forced closure of our stores for prolonged periods has severely impacted on trading across all of our brands.

"Throughout this immensely challenging time, our priority has been to protect jobs and preserve the financial stability of the group in the hope that we could ride out the pandemic and come out fighting on the other side.

"Ultimately, however, in the face of the most difficult trading conditions we have ever experienced, the obstacles we encountered were far too severe."

ASOS went on to rescue the brand for £295million, acquiring Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge and HIIT in March this year.

However, all stores were closed, with just 300 jobs saved.