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The Japanese Version of Ikea Is Taking Over Southern Cali

Photo via Aki-home/<a href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/Aki-Home/342474632546097">Facebook</a>.
Photo via Aki-home/Facebook.

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Having conquered Japan with more than 300 stores, Japanese furniture giant Nitori is looking to the US for further expansion.

The story of Nitori actually begins in the United States. As told on the brand's about page, founder Akio Nitori took a trip to California in the 1970s and was so inspired by what he saw there—spacious homes, convenient stores, color-coordinated furniture, inexpensive yet high-quality items—that he determined he would bring this type of experience back to Japan for local shoppers. In October, he expanded the concept to the US with two stateside stores, named Aki-home, in Orange County.

According to the Orange County Register, these two are just the beginnings of a nationwide rollout. Immediate plans include a "handful" of Southern California stores; within the next 20 years, the company would like to open 1,000 stores in the US. Next year, they will add US e-commerce to their website. The Register describes the Aki-home aesthetic as a hybrid of Ikea and Bed Bath & Beyond, with "an urban Japanese design twist." The stores carry furniture, decor items, bath and bedding, housewares and kitchen necessities, which are organized by room a la Ikea.
· 'Japanese Ikea' makes room for itself [OC Register via]
· The History of the Ikea Meatball [Racked]
· Ikea Breakthrough Lets You Test Furniture Before You Buy [Racked]