IKEA Southeast Asia reached another milestone today with the opening of its newest meeting place at its store in Batu Kawan.
IKEA Southeast Asia managing director Christian Roejkjaer said this is the first phase of its shopping centre to welcome big name retailers to Batu Kawan.
“With 80,000sq ft of leasing space spread across four levels, the retail extension promises to create hundreds of new jobs and become a hub of community life in the Batu Kawan township.
“It is also a key component of the master plan for Aspen Vision City which is a joint venture between IKEA Southeast Asia and Malaysia’s Aspen Group.
“There are more than 15 units now open including some established retailers such as Harvey Norman, Sports Direct, Molly Fantasy, Project Rock, 7-Eleven and Tealive.
“With a 97% lease rate, the retail arm provides a great base for many more partners to join in the coming years as the meeting place grows.
“Thus, this is part of our mission to go beyond just shopping but to create fantastic meeting places for everyone to come together,” Roejkjaer said in his speech during the grand opening ceremony of the newest meeting place at IKEA Batu Kawan today.
Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow, who graced the opening ceremony of the event, praised the innovative approach by IKEA Southeast Asia in making Batu Kawan a vibrant place.
“Since its opening in March this year, I have personally seen how IKEA has changed the dynamics of Batu Kawan.
“The IKEA team has worked hard with local authorities to plan and push for improvements, such as road networks to ensure all businesses today are easily accessible.
“Thus, looking at the exciting mix of tenants opening their doors today, this new meeting place at IKEA Batu Kawan will certainly be a great day out for the entire family.
“This will no doubt in my view, be one of the key drivers to affirm Batu Kawan’s position as one of the most vibrant cities in the northern region of Malaysia.
“The state government will also continue to work closely and collectively with the team at IKEA Southeast Asia and Aspen Group to establish Batu Kawan as a vibrant metropolis,” Chow said.
Also present were IKEA Southeast Asia shopping centre and mixed-use director Christian Olofsson, Deputy Head of Mission of the Embassy of Sweden in Kuala Lumpur Ola Pihlblad, Aspen Group president and chief executive officer Datuk M. Murly and Aspen Group executive deputy chairman Datuk Seri Nazir Ariff Mushir Ariff.
Other distinguished guests were state Youth and Sports Committee chairman Soon Lip Chee, Sungai Bakap assemblyman Dr Amar Pritpal Abdullah, Bukit Tambun assemblyman Goh Choon Aik and Batu Kawan MP Kasthuriraani Patto.
Story by Riadz Akmal
Pix by Noor Siti Nabilah Noorazis
Video by Ahmad Adil Muhamad