Veteran entrepreneur Ingvar Kamprad, founder of the IKEA furniture empire, died at 91

The founder of the iconic Swedish furniture sales chain Ikea, Ingvar Kamprad, died Sunday at the age of 91 after a “brief illness,” according to the company.

“Ingvar Kamprad passed away peacefully in his home” in Smaland, in southern Sweden, announced on Ikea Twitter handle.

The empire currently employs 190,000 people in various parts of the world and generates a turnover of 38,000 million euros.

Getty Images

The multinational has 412 stores in more than 50 countries, mainly in Europe.

“We will remember your dedication and commitment” to ordinary people, said Torbjorn Loof, executive director and president of the Inter IKEA group, in a statement.

Born in 1926 into a family of farmers in the south of the Swedish region of Smaland, Ingvar Kamprad was 17 years old when he founded the company, and achieved rapid success by adjusting prices to sell cheaper than its established competition.

“His legacy will be admired for many years and his vision to create a better life every day for many people will continue to guide and inspire us,” Jesper Brodin, president of the Ikea group, said in a statement.

The iconic furniture and household goods store operates in 50 countries. In the image a branch in China (Getty Images)

Kamprad retired in 2013, leaving the management of the company to his youngest son, and was one of the 500 richest people in the world , according to Forbes magazine , but still  had almost an obsession with a modest and austere life.

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