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To slash waste, Ikea looks to artificial intelligence

5 Mar 2020

One of every 10 Ikea items gets returned—and 15% of that goes to waste. Enter AI.

Ikea’s furniture—omnipresent, affordable, and user-friendly—is so popular it can be found in apartments, for sale on Craigslist, or curbside, following years of loving use. The Swedish mega-retailer sells approximately $44.6 billion worth of its 12,000 products a year, and roughly one of every 10 of those items is returned—15% of which become waste. Given this high turnover rate, Ikea has recently announced a new approach to handling returned merchandise without relegating it to the trash bin: artificial intelligence.

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