IKEA Acquires TaskRabbit, Saving Relationships Nationwide

If you want to break up with your significant other, just spend an afternoon at IKEA, where all your previous petty disagreements will be awkwardly resurrected amid the snaking displays of furniture that neither of you really want but are better than living on milk crates. Thankfully, IKEA just purchased TaskRabbit, the company that will allow you to stay in your relationship by sending someone to shop at IKEA — and maybe even put your mid-priced furnishings together.

IKEA Group says it’s signed a conditional agreement to buy 100% of the shares in TaskRabbit, which will be a separate subsidiary.

For those unfamiliar, TaskRabbit connects customers with “Taskers” — people willing to run errands, wait in long lines, or hey — put together furniture.

To that end, one of the reasons IKEA is buying TaskRabbit is to expand the kinds of services it can offer to shoppers — for example, someone could do your shopping for you, deliver it, and assemble furniture.

“In a fast changing retail environment, we continuously strive to develop new and improved products and services to make our customers’ lives a little bit easier,” says Jesper Brodin, President and CEO of IKEA Group.

Getting into on-demand services helps IKEA do that, he adds, noting that the company can learn from TaskRabbit’s digital expertise, “while also providing IKEA customers additional ways to access flexible and affordable service solutions.”

Once completed, the deal would enable IKEA “to provide consumers and IKEA customers with access to the services provided by the TaskRabbit Taskers,” the company says, noting that such services would start in the U.S. and United Kingdom, but that “other countries may be added at a later date.”

It wouldn’t be an entirely new idea for IKEA and TaskRabbit, as the companies partnered up for a Nov. 2016 pilot in London IKEA stores that provided furniture-assembly services by Taskers.