Ingvar Kamprad, IKEA founder, left $23 billion to charities

Ingvar Kamprad was one of the most successful entrepreneurs of the 20th century. 

From the time of its establishment in 1943, IKEA has become a worldwide phenomenon, revolutionising the way in which home furnishings are both bought and sold. ‘Flat pack’ (a style of packaging which IKEA pioneered) is now part of the common lexicon, and IKEA furnishings adorn almost every modern home in some manner. Needless to say, the success of the company made its founder a very, very rich man.

Kamprad’s personal fortune had reached a staggering $46 billion by the time he passed away in January at the age of 91. It has since been announced that, while half of his fortune will be passed on to his children (Peter, Jonas, Mathias and Annika), the rest will be used for charitable means. Kamprad’s will, written in 2014, reads:

The remaining part of my estate will go to the FKS foundation. These funds will be used for the development of business activity in Norrland.”

According to The Local SE:

The Kamprad Family Foundation for Entrepreneurship, Research and Charity (Familjen Kamprads stiftelse, FKS) was founded by the entrepreneur in 2011 and is worth an estimated 4.7 billion kronor. Until now its activities have focused on Småland, the rural Swedish region from which Kamprad hailed.

“Ingvar Kamprad always had an interest in Norrland and often visited the region. He wanted to make it possible for people to live there, and not have to leave,” Ikea Foundation director Per Heggenes told Swedish newspaper DN, who first revealed the contents of Kamprad’s will.” Per Heggenes, director of the Ikea Foundation, explains.

By placing focus on charitable enterprise campaigns in his local region, Kamprad’s hope was to encourage people to remain in their homeland, without the need to travel or emigrate for work.