Clas Ohlson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Clas Ohlson AB
Publicly traded Aktiebolag
Traded as Nasdaq StockholmCLAS B
Industry Retail
Founded 1918
Founder Clas Ohlson [1]
Headquarters Insjön, Dalarna, Sweden
Revenue Increase SEK 7,990 million (2016/17) [2]
Number of employees
4,800 (2016/17) [3]
A typical Clas Ohlson branch in Oslo

Clas Ohlson is a Swedish hardware store chain and mail-order firm that specialises in hardware, home, leisure, electrical and multimedia products. It is one of the biggest of its type in Scandinavia, with more than 200 Clas Ohlson stores as of October 2013.[4] Stores also exist in Norway, Finland, the United Kingdom, Germany and Dubai. Many of the products sold in the stores are own-label items. The company uses the house brands of Asaklitt (luggage and travelware), Capere (bathroom supplies), Cocraft (DIY tools), Cotech (electrical tools), Coline (household electrical items), Exibel (household electrical items) and Northlight (lighting).


The company was founded in 1918 by the technically minded Clas Ohlson (1895–1979), as a mail order business based in the Swedish village of Insjön, Dalarna. Initially, only manuals and technical literature were sold, thus allowing people who lived in rural communities to obtain literature that would otherwise be unavailable. He opened his first shop in Insjön in 1926[citation needed], but it was not until 1989, when the company opened a store in a shopping centre in central Stockholm, that it expanded into the retail business.[5]

The first store outside Sweden was opened 1991 in Oslo in Norway and in 1999, the company was listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange.

The first store in Finland was opened 2002 in Helsinki and in 2008, the company opened its first UK retail store in Croydon, England.[6]

In 2014 the company entered a joint venture with Kuwait's Al Homaizi group. In May that year, the company opened the first Clas Ohlson branch outside Europe, a store in Dubai's Mirdif City Centre. It was, the Swedish company said, 'a first step into the fast-growing Gulf Co-operation Council region'.[7] The livestock-to-sportswear Al Homaizi group had in 1987 opened a flat-pack furniture store in Kuwait with Swedish retailer IKEA, under whose name the store traded.

In 2016, Clas Ohlson continued its expansion by opening a retail store in Hamburg, Germany.


External links[edit]