Grocer growth: Aldi

Last week, grocery chain Aldi announced it would be building its biggest-ever store in the UK: the first of many the same size.

Scheduled to open in October this year, the store in Lincolnshire will be 19,000 sq ft large, an upgrade on the average 16,500 sq ft size of other Aldi stores.

“This will be the new standard size for all future Aldi UK stores” explains Mark Taylor, Aldi‘s Property Director for Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, “the new larger size will enable us to display our products in a more consumer friendly way.”

In Summer 2014, the German discounter announced plans of a £600m expansion, which will see 60 new stores open this year as well as new regional distribution centres in Barnsley and Cardiff and a major revamp across existing stores. Staff numbers are expected to increase to as much as 24,000 – double the current number and by 2023, Aldi expects to be trading from as many as 550 new outlets, employing another 35,000 employees.

Aldi‘s growth comes as Big Four grocers shake up staff numbers. Tesco, the UK‘s biggest grocery chain, announced the closure of 43 stores and a head office and Sainsbury‘s followed suit, revealing that 500 jobs are to be axed across all divisions and store support centres. In a downward trend, Morrison‘s also confirmed rumours that it would stop trading at “10 loss making outlets”, putting some 400 jobs at risk.

Asda is performing slightly better than its competitors, having already completed a very large restructure in the summer which removed costs from store and some head office positions. The supermarket chain very recently announced some senior movements, which has also removed costs and simplified reporting lines.

“Asda is doing well in sales, so it is not under the same pressure to reduce costs. This is done as a matter of course rather than as a response to poor profit” Phil Dorrell, Director of Retail Consultants at Retail Remedy told Retail Gazette


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