Flatpack Empire

Flatpack Empire

Series 1 - Episode 2



Ikea’s 400th store is due to open in Sheffield. But the date keeps slipping. Recruitment, however, must proceed and there’s a drive for staff.

One young hopeful is Luke, who confides to the camera after his interview, “To be honest I didn’t know Ikea existed. I thought it were Lidl at first.”

In another fascinating instalment of this delightful series we visit the factory that makes one of Ikea’s biggest sellers, the Billy bookcase. But a huge part of their work has now gone to Asia, and the family firm is pinning its hopes for the future on persuading Ikea that it can make a new range of cupboards.


One of IKEA's newest designers, Hanna-Kaarina Heikkila, wants to challenge mass production by creating an `imperfect vase' that has the finger-marks of its creator. She travels to China to see if her idea is possible. There's also a visit to the home of the Billy Bookcase to see what it takes to be a supplier for IKEA, as the company tries to pitch a new range of wardrobes.

Cast & Crew

Executive Producer Tom Barry
Executive Producer Liesel Evans
Series Director Rob Farquhar
Series Producer Tom Swingler