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Ikea will start buying back customers' used furniture and reselling it in UK stores

  • Ikea customers in the UK and Ireland will be able to sell used furniture back to the retailer for up to half the original price.
  • Ikea will then resell this second-hand furniture as part of a scheme that starts on Black Friday, November 27.
  • Customers get an in-store voucher when they bring back their furniture, rather than cash.
  • The Swedish furniture giant is launching the initiative on Black Friday to "help its customers take a stand against excessive consumption."
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Ikea wants its furniture back.

The retailer will begin buying back its customers' used furniture and sell it in stores second-hand in the UK and Ireland, it announced Tuesday.

Customers will get in-store vouchers, rather than cash, for their furniture, it said. The vouchers won't have an expiry date.

The vouchers will be valued at up to half of the original price of the furniture, depending on the condition.

The scheme is part of its drive to sustainability, the Swedish flat-pack giant said.

It will launch on Black Friday, which this year falls on November 27, to "help its customers take a stand against excessive consumption," the retailer said.

Read more: Retailers are struggling to attract seasonal workers for what experts anticipate will be a "tough holiday season"

For furniture that is "as new" with no scratches, customers will be given half the original prices – but this drops to 30% for furniture that is "well-used" with "several scratches."

Items that can't be resold will be recycled or donated to local community projects, it said.

Most large items of furniture are eligible for the scheme, including dressers, tables, chairs, and display storage.

To sell furniture, customers need to fill in an online form that automatically generates an initial price offer. Customers then have to bring the product to the returns-and-exchanges desk in store, where they will receive their voucher.

This fall, Ikea will also open its first store that will sell only refurbished furniture and sustainably produced products. The store will be in the ReTuna shopping mall in Eskilstuna, Sweden, the world's first "recycles mall," where everything sold is refurbished or recycled. 

The Buy Back scheme and second hand store both feed into Ikea's goal to become carbon positive by 2030, which it recently committed an additional $707 million (600 million euros) to.

"With the launch of Buy Back we are giving a second life to many more Ikea products and creating more easy and affordable solutions to help people live more sustainably," said Peter Jelkeby, country retail manager and chief sustainability officer at Ikea UK & Ireland.

"It is an exciting step forward in our journey towards becoming a fully circular and climate positive business by 2030," he added.

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