by Christopher Freeburn | September 30, 2013 3:28 pm
IKEA, best known for its assemble-it-yourself furniture, is taking a step into the renewable energy market.
The Sweden-based manufacturer will sell solar panels produced by Hanergy, a Chinese manufacturer. The panels will begin appearing at IKEA stores in the United Kingdom on Monday, The Associated Press notes.
An IKEA executive noted that a recent decline in solar panel prices made this “the right time” to try and bring them to the consumer market. IKEA stores will offer installation, design and maintenance consulting for shoppers who purchase the 3.36 kilowatt systems. The solar panel units come in black and are priced at $9,200 each.
At that price it would take roughly seven years for the average British homeowner to recoup his or her solar panel purchase. IKEA plans to expand solar panel sales to other countries over the long-term.
American consumers can already purchase solar panels from big-box retailers including Lowe’s (LOW) and Home Depot (HD).
Earlier this year, Ikea teamed with Marriott International (MAR) to launch a chain of budget hotels in Europe.
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