IKEA US’s Surprise Holiday Gift To Employees: Bicycles!

12,400 IKEA US workers were recently surprised with an interesting holiday bonus, a bike! The IKEA Employees across the US had no idea what was in store for them when they came to work on December 7, and mysterious trucks rolled up with bicycles in tow.

While there have already been some jokes made at the expense of the quality of the bike, bike snobs need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. 12,400 bikes, at even 100 dollars a piece thats $1,240,000! While the bikes aren’t going to hold up to any heavy long term use with out some serious work, the fact remains that if the gesture gets even one person interested in cycling and improving their health, it was a success.

The gift of a bike is not the only newsworthy item here, but more importantly the message IKEA is trying to send, that commuting by bike is good for you and good for the environment. Not many companies are going to make this part of their business philosophy, and then actually back it up with a free bike for every employee.

All in all, I think it is pretty cool that even in this economy IKEA is rewarding their employees with not only a Christmas bonus, but a thoughtful one aimed at keeping them healthy and happy throughout the new year.

Check out the full press release after the break!

IKEA US Says Thank You to All Its 12,400 Co-Workers with a Surprise ‘New Bike’ Holiday Gift

It’s Good for the Employees & Good for the Environment Too!

CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The big reveal takes place today. Truck doors will open, bicycles will be unloaded and the surprise will be disclosed. IKEA US co-workers across the country will then find out that each and every one has a brand new bike to take or ride home.

“It’s been a good year for IKEA, so what better way to celebrate our success than to thank our IKEA co-workers who made this happen. Our big reveal today will be a fun day as we unload 12,400 new bikes at IKEA US locations. This is our way of saying ‘thanks IKEA co-workers for being strongly committed to working together.’ We hope this bike will be taken in the spirit of the season while supporting a healthy lifestyle and everyday sustainable transport,” commented Mike Ward, IKEA US President.

With a strong commitment to good health and being environmentally conscious, IKEA selected an all terrain bike as the holiday co-worker gift for 2010. What makes it even more special is that the delivery of bikes is a total surprise for all co-workers. Hopefully, all will stay mum until today/Tuesday, December 7th at 9:30 am (each store’s local time).

Why a bike? Because when it comes to sustainable transport, a bicycle is a great option. And when it comes to healthy living, riding a bike is one of the best cardio forms of exercise. Here are some facts.

  • Bicycling is an excellent cardio-vascular exercise, which promotes heart health. Just like in any other aerobic workout, bicycling makes your heart pump harder. Also blood circulation increases and eventually, your resting heart rate will decrease. (Helium.com; Benefits of Bicycling by Erich Rosenberger M.D.)
  • On average, commuting 10 miles a day by bike in 30 minutes, instead of driving a car burns 110,250 calories (keeping off 30 pounds of fat each year). (Sources: Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, RailstoTrails.org, Fitsugar.com, Adultbicycling.com
  • Cycling just 20 miles a week can help reduce the risk of coronary heart disease by 50%. (Sources: Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, RailstoTrails.org, Fitsugar.com, Adultbicycling.com
  • Countries with the highest levels of cycling and walking generally have the lowest obesity rates. (Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia)

For Sustainable living, bicycling also has many benefits.

  • Bicycling reduces polluting emissions. A short, four mile round trip by a bike keeps about 15 pounds of pollutants out of the air we breathe. (WorldWatch Institute, www.bicyclinginfo.org)
  • In 2001 walking and bicycling accounted for 23 billion miles traveled, worth billions of dollars in fuel savings alone. (Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia)
  • In one year, riding a bike versus owning and driving a car will save an individual $8,000 in gasoline and general car maintenance and insurance costs. (Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia)

Comments

andy - 12/09/10 - 12:56pm

There is something to be said for bikes, even inexpensive bikes. i love the fact that they chose a rigid frame and fork, not a suspended one. The components on the bike look decent and in fact are likely more than adequate for most of the ikea employees. if my company gave me a bike like that, i would ride the hell out it. i cant even get my company to add a shower to our new office space even though they are designing it from a shell space..lame

Andrew - 12/09/10 - 1:20pm

Not to be a killjoy, but that bike would cost less than $100 at Walmart, so the wholesale cost to Ikea would probably be less than $50.

Even at $50 each, for 12,400 people that’s $620,000. Ikea had profits of 3.43 BILLION dollars in fiscal year 2009. That means they spent 0.018% of their profits on the bikes, roughly.

It’s a nice gesture, but they could have at least got them a halfway decent bike…

uglyyeti - 12/09/10 - 3:47pm

Kudos to Ikea for doing that. I just went there for lunch and stuffed myself with meatballs and lingonberry jelly – it’s coma time.

V-brakes and cable stops are a nice plus – it might even have alloy rims (or they might be painted). Hopefully they all get well ridden – that’s 12,400 more bikes on the planet – that’s a good thing.

Maybe the really grumpy girl working the kitchen dept with her head on the desk and hiding her eyes hadn’t gotten hers yet, or maybe she was just still hung over at lunch time. Or she’d overdone it on the lingonberries.

topmounter - 12/09/10 - 4:45pm

I’ll be curious to see Ikea’s assembly instructions… and I wonder if each bike comes with an Allen wrench?

jimmie proof - 12/09/10 - 8:10pm

I would have preferred coal.

Gillis - 12/09/10 - 9:19pm

Props to Ikea. I’d like to see even ONE US-based company do something like this for their employees.

anon - 12/09/10 - 9:20pm

What’s going on with those chainrings? They look unusually large. Check ebay and Craigs tomorrow for 6,500 of those bikes for sale dirt-cheap.

uglyyeti - 12/10/10 - 12:42pm

Already happening on eBay…

NEW Special Edition IKEA Bicycle RARE

Time left: 5d 09h (Dec 15, 201018:57:24 PST)
Bid history: 11 bids
Current bid: US $202.50

uglyyeti - 12/10/10 - 12:51pm

We now know it’s made by Kent Int’l. Here’s the current Craigslist round up…

SF Bay Area…
Reply to: sale-zbapr-2105043111@craigslist.org
Hi there Craigslist! I have a brand new IKEA Special Edition bicycle in brand spanking new condition! I got it as a company Christmas gift from IKEA! I own several other bicycles and I do not need this bike. Be one of the first to own a limited edition IKEA bicycle frame that no one else owns. *except other IKEA coworkers =) * Who knows, it may become a collector item in near future. It is a mountain bike with metal frame construction. It features 21 speed, Unisex frame, 26 inch metal frame. $200. Hurry! Before item become too popular!
*Bicycle in photo was for display. The bike you will receive is the exact same bike in its original packaging.
Get it in time for Christmas and New Years! Great for those who wish to get some exercise as their New Year resolution!

Sacremento…
Brand spankin new mountain bike! Got it as a gift from work (weird, I know), but have no use for it, as I don’t really ride bikes. Specifically designed for Ikea co-workers, so it’s not something you can get anywhere else. Email or text me, (916)595-8944.

Baltimore…
.Brand New in Box.
This bike was given to all 12,400 IKEA US employees. Manufactured by: KENT INTERNATIONAL only for IKEA. You cannot buy this bike anywhere. $200.

Cincinnati…
I have a brand new 26″ Ikea Brand Mountain Bike that I have no use for if your interested please contact me. $200.

Portland…
3 ads wanting to buy them!

Philly…

Christmas bonus bike from Ikea. I’d like $300.00 for it but will accept a reasonable offer. I need money for Christmas. Brand new still in original package.

ZachOverholt - 12/10/10 - 1:44pm

What’s Christmas without a little regifting ;)

Sean - 12/20/10 - 12:09pm

Oh poo what is this they get bicycles for gifts and my ikea gave me a white picture in a picture frame.

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