|Birth Day:||March 30, 1926|
|Death Date:||Jan 27, 2018 (age 91)|
|Birth Place:||Almhult, Sweden|
As per our current Database, Ingvar Kamprad died on Jan 27, 2018 (age 91).
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He started his entrepreneurial career by buying matches wholesale and re-selling them at modest profits. This later expanded to selling fish, to decorations and more.
Ingvar attended Göteborgs handelsinstitut, now part of Hvitfeldtska Gymnasiet, from 1943 to 1945. In 1943, when he was 17, Kamprad founded IKEA, selling replicas of his uncle Ernst's kitchen table. In 1948, Kamprad diversified his portfolio, adding furniture. His business was mostly mail order. The acronym IKEA is made up of the initials of his name (Ingvar Kamprad) plus those of Elmtaryd, the family farm where he was born, and the nearby village Agunnaryd where he was raised.
While generally a private person, Kamprad had published a few notable works. He first detailed his philosophies of frugality and simplicity in a manifesto entitled A Testament of a Furniture Dealer in 1976.
In 1994, the personal letters of the Swedish fascist Per Engdahl were made public, posthumously revealing that Kamprad had joined Engdahl's pro-fascist New Swedish Movement (Nysvenska Rörelsen) in 1942, at age 16. Kamprad had raised funds and recruited members for the group, at least as late as September 1945. When he quit the group is unknown, but he remained a friend of Engdahl until the early 1950s.
Kamprad devoted two chapters to his time in Nysvenska Rörelsen in his book Leading by Design: The IKEA Story and, in a 1994 letter to IKEA employees, called his affiliation with the organization the "greatest mistake of my life". Kamprad explained his teenage engagement in New Swedish Movement as being politically influenced by his father and grandmother in Sudet-Germany. In 2011, journalist Elisabeth Åsbrink published a book Made in Sweden: How the Swedes Are Not Nearly So Egalitarian, Tolerant, Hospitable or Cozy As They Would Like to (Have You) Think in which she revealed that, by 1943, the Swedish Security Service had created a file on Kamprad entitled "Nazi", and that Kamprad had told her, during a 2010 interview, that "Per Engdahl is a great man, and I will maintain that as long as I live."
According to an article in the Swedish business weekly Veckans Affärer in 2004, Kamprad was one of the world's wealthiest people. This report was based on the assumption that he owned the entire company, an approach both IKEA and the Kamprad family rejected. Kamprad retained little direct ownership in the company, having transferred his interest to Stichting INGKA Foundation and INGKA Holding as part of a complex tax sheltering scheme that leaves his actual degree of control vague.
The Dutch-registered Stichting INGKA Foundation is named after Ingvar Kamprad (i.e., ING + KA) which owns INGKA Holding, the parent company for all IKEA stores. In May 2006 the charitable foundation was reported by The Economist to be the world's wealthiest charity, however the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has since become larger. Despite its large endowment its primary purpose is corporate tax-minimisation and anti-takeover protection for IKEA. Kamprad was chairman of the foundation.
In March 2010, Forbes magazine estimated Kamprad's fortune at US$23 billion, making him the eleventh richest person in the world. A year later, he fell to 162nd after his lawyers produced documents proving that the foundation he established and heads in Liechtenstein owns IKEA, and that its bylaws bar him and his family from benefiting from its funds. In June 2015, Kamprad was listed as the eighth wealthiest person in the world in the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, with an estimated net worth of $58.7 billion. Forbes reported Kamprad's net worth as of February 2016 to be $3.4 billion.
Writing in The Daily Telegraph, in August 2011, Richard Orange noted that the 1943 file proved for the first time that Kamprad "was an active member of Svensk Socialistisk Samling – successor to the Swedish Nationalist Socialist Workers Party – citing his membership number: 4013. It quotes letters intercepted from Mr Kamprad, then 17, in which he enthuses about recruiting new members and says that he "misses no opportunity to work for the movement." Orange added, "The secret service concluded that, as Mr Kamprad received the party's youth newspaper, he must have held "some sort of official position within the organisation." The following day, the BBC reported: "A Swedish expert on far-right extremism, Anna-Lena Lodenius, told Radio Sweden that Mr Kamprad's Nazi involvement could no longer be dismissed as the by-product of an accidental friendship with Per Engdahl. His involvement in another fascist organisation, she said, showed he must have been 'perfectly aware' of what it stood for." The BBC report also noted that a spokesman said that Kamprad "had long admitted flirting with fascism, but that now, "there are no Nazi-sympathising thoughts in Ingvar's head whatsoever."
In June 2013, Kamprad resigned from the board of Inter IKEA Holding SA and his youngest son Mathias Kamprad replaced Per Ludvigsson as the chairman of the holding company. Following his decision to step down, the then-87-year-old founder explained, "I see this as a good time for me to leave the board of Inter IKEA Group. By that we are also taking another step in the generation shift that has been ongoing for some years." Mathias and his two older brothers, who also have leadership roles at IKEA, work on the corporation's overall vision and long-term strategy.
He lived in Épalinges, Switzerland, from 1976 to 2014. Kamprad moved back to Småland in Sweden in March 2014 after 40 years abroad. While working with furniture manufacturers in Poland earlier in his career, Kamprad became an alcoholic. In 2004 he said that his drinking was under control, and according to The New York Times, Kamprad "controlled it by drying out three times a year".
Kamprad died in his sleep of pneumonia at his home in Småland, Sweden, on 27 January 2018 at the age of 91. According to his will, half of Kamprad's estate would go to projects in Norrland, a sparsely populated part of Sweden. Kamprad reportedly wanted to develop Norrland and make it possible for young people to live there.
Currently, Ingvar Kamprad is 96 years, 8 months and 3 days old. Ingvar Kamprad will celebrate 97th birthday on a Thursday 30th of March 2023.
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