Inter IKEA Group (Inter IKEA Holding S.A. and all its subsidiaries) is owned by Interogo Foundation, based in Liechtenstein and established in 1989.
The foundation is an independent entity with legal personality and its own governing bodies. The foundation exists for an unlimited period of time.
Ingvar Kamprad, the creator of IKEA, has a true passion for his lifework and wished to secure the independence and longevity of the IKEA Concept, including e.g. the IKEA trademarks.
Inter IKEA and Interogo were established during the 1980s to secure independence and longevity of the IKEA Concept. The IKEA Concept is the core asset of Inter IKEA Group and its franchisor operation. The overall purpose of Inter IKEA Group is to secure continuous improvement, development, expansion and a long life of the IKEA Concept. This will require investments in both good and bad times.
With Interogo Foundations’ long-term perspective and obligation to remain independent, a public listing of the Inter IKEA companies can never be an option. The foundation ownership structure with an unlimited life period secures independence and longevity.
Interogo Foundation is the ultimate owner of Inter IKEA Group, including Inter IKEA Systems B.V., the worldwide IKEA franchisor and owner of the IKEA Concept. In this manner the IKEA Concept will remain under the ultimate and undivided control of Interogo Foundation, over generations and irrespective of changes related to individuals or family relationships. And thus avoid a fragmentation of ownership that potentially could occur if it would have been family owned or publicly listed. For these reasons, the Liechtenstein Foundation law, offering a particular form of enterprise foundations (Unternehmensstiftung), was found to be best suited for the purpose for which Interogo was established.
Interogo is an enterprise foundation (Unternehmensstiftung) with the status of a legal person under Liechtenstein law. Its main purpose is to own and govern Inter IKEA Group and to invest in Inter IKEA and thereby in the further expansion of the IKEA Concept, in order to secure the independence and the longevity of the Group and the IKEA Concept.
The foundation can also support individual IKEA franchisees experiencing financial difficulties or make donations to certain philanthropic causes.
In simple terms, the characteristic of an enterprise foundation is that it ‘owns itself’, and funds held by the foundation can only be used for its determined purposes. Consequently the Kamprad family does neither own nor control Interogo. It is however intended that the family of Ingvar Kamprad, as the creator of IKEA, over generations should be offered the opportunity to be engaged in the Supervisory Council (Beirat) of Interogo, but always in minority.
Retained earnings within the Inter IKEA Group are reinvested in the Group’s long term business. Investments are also made in financial instruments to provide a financial reserve for future possible needs.
Governance of Interogo Foundation
Interogo Foundation was established to secure the continuance and the best possible future for the Inter IKEA Group and the IKEA Concept. The governance of Inter IKEA Group is ultimately guided by the purpose of Interogo Foundation.
Interogo Foundation is the sole owner of Inter IKEA Holding SA. In exercise of it shareholder rights, Interogo appoints the Board of Directors of Inter IKEA Holding SA at shareholder meetings.
Interogo Foundation has two governing bodies, a Foundation Council (Stiftungsrat) and a Supervisory Council (Beirat).
The Foundation Council represents the foundation and has currently two members: Herbert Oberhuber and Johannes Burger.
The Foundation Council is supervised by the Supervisory Council. As a principle the Supervisory Council has seven seats. The Kamprad family will over generations be offered the opportunity to be engaged in the Supervisory Council, but must always be in minority.
Members of the Supervisory Council presently are: Hans Gydell, Mathias Kamprad, Per Ludvigsson, Birger Lund, and Urs Wickihalder. Each outgoing member of the Supervisory Council appoints his or her successor.
The foundation is meant to be of eternal existence and circumstances can change. Therefore the statutes contain rules of how the statutory provisions relating to the structure or organisation can be changed. The goal is to secure the pursuance of the foundation’s purpose, also if circumstances changes. The purpose of the foundation itself, however, can never be changed, as long as it is possible to fulfil the same. Under the most unlikely scenario that it is no longer possible to pursue the foundation’s purpose, it can be altered by a court ruling only.