A rapid expansion programme has led to an adverse impact on profits at Aldi for the third consecutive year, despite another rise in sales and market share.
In its full year to December 31, 2016, the German retailer’s operating profit dropped 17 per cent to £211.3 million, while gross profit slipped seven per sent to £324.5 million.
However, in the same period sales rose 13.5 per cent to £8.744 billion.
In addition, the discount grocer’s sales and market share doubled in the last four years.
Aldi said its profits were affected by a £450 million investment scheme in the past year, which included new stores and enhancing its distribution centres in the UK and Ireland.
The supermarket retailer currently has 726 stores in the UK and aims to have 1000 by 2022.
Aldi is also rolling out its Project Fresh initiative, creating more space for fresh, chilled and food-to-go ranges in an improved store environment.
“Our growth is accelerating, thanks to the hundreds of thousands of new customers switching their shop to Aldi,” Aldi UK & Ireland chief Matthew Barnes said.
“We‘re doing everything we can to insulate customers from those cost increases, making sure our prices are the lowest in the UK, every day of the year.
“At the same time, we‘ve been improving the quality of our range and introducing the new products our customers have asked for.”