Ikea Recalls Products After Tip-Over Deaths, Offers Refunds to Millions
Ikea is recalling a popular line of low-cost dressers after the deaths of three children in the past two years. The recall affects around 27 million chests and dressers in the “Malm” series because they can easily tip over if they aren’t anchored to a wall. The company previously warned customers of the possible dangers of the dressers and offered free anchoring kits to those who bought the furniture, but it wasn’t enough. Ikea is now discontinuing sales of the furniture and offering full refunds to customers who purchased a piece manufactured between 2002 and 2016. For older models, the company will give customers a store credit.
Total Retail’s Take: It’s clear Ikea didn’t do enough to stop tip-over accidents from happening. Offering customers anchoring kits doesn’t mean they will use them, regardless if it says to in the instructions. The payout Ikea is now giving customers is huge. Although the three- and six-drawer dressers are no longer for sale on Ikea's website, the two-drawer costs $49.99, meaning the total payout is well over $1.3 billion — almost 10 percent of the retailer's annual profits for 2015. This could have been partially avoided if Ikea agreed to a product redesign to meet industry safety standards, or offered refunds when it first learned of the accidents.