Ikea gives bicycles to its workers

Thousands of employees got bikes to thank them for "great results and great team work," said an Ikea spokeswoman.
Thousands of employees got bikes to thank them for "great results and great team work," said an Ikea spokeswoman.
Posted: December 08, 2010

There was an early holiday present for 12,400 Ikea employees in the United States Tuesday morning.

Bicycles for all.

The brand was not disclosed, nor the cost - after all, it is a gift - but the bicycles were made specifically for Ikea employees, to thank them for "great results and great team work," said company spokeswoman Mona Liss.

"It has been a good year for Ikea US (and Ikea Global as well)," Liss wrote in an e-mail. Ikea's U.S. headquarters is in Conshohocken.

Giving employees bicycles also "supports a healthy lifestyle and everyday sustainable transport," she said.

The silver bikes have a yellow, white and blue stripe, and are all-terrain and unisex.

They don't have the Ikea logo, however, because "we don't want people to think we manufacture bicycles," Liss said.

Employee - Ikea calls them "coworkers" - Luz J. Morales of Philadelphia called the gift "completely unexpected."

Coworkers with whom Morales talked were also taken by surprise by the bicycle.

"It's such a cool gift, and ties in with our tagline of being 'the life-improvement store,' " said Morales, who plans to use it for recreation primarily, riding it in Valley Green and even taking it to Kelly Drive.

Morales wasn't a biker before, "but I am now."

For anyone who owns something Ikea, the answer to the obvious question - is assembly required? - is, "Yes."

"Flat-packed, of course, the 'Ikea way,' Liss said, adding that the bike is easy to assemble - one wheel has to be put on as well as the seat, handle bars and pedals.

"We have been told it takes more time to get out the bike and parts out of the box than to assemble the bike," she said.

By the way, in Sweden, it is called a "cykel."


Contact real estate writer Alan J. Heavens at 215-854-2472 or aheavens@phillynews.com.

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