Aldi has announced record results for its last financial year.
Sales in the UK and Ireland rose 16.4% to £10.2 billion in the year to December 31 2017 – a higher growth rate than the previous year (13.5%).
The supermarket chain gained more market share than any other last year, attracting a further 1.1 million shoppers through its doors, and now commands 7.6% of all UK grocery spend, according to data from Kantar Worldpanel (an international company dealing in consumer knowledge and insights based on continuous consumer panels). Aldi is now the UK’s fifth largest supermarket with over 775 stores and more than 30,000 employees.
Giles Hurley, chief executive officer of Aldi UK and Ireland, said: “The revolution in British grocery shows no sign of slowing. Savvy customers know they can swap and save with Aldi, thanks to great quality products at lower prices. This is happening on a massive scale.
“While other grocers introduced more complexity into their businesses in their struggle to win back customers, we stuck to our guns and focused on doing what Aldi does best: buying smart, staying lean, improving quality and keeping prices low.
“Our biggest strength is our simplicity – a carefully selected range of exclusive own-label brands and award-winning products at the lowest prices. Millions of Britons can put fantastic-tasting food on their table every day of the week, at prices they can afford.
“Last year Aldi announced a £1bn investment during 2017 and 2018 to open new stores in every part of the UK, hundreds of store upgrades and extended distribution centres. It remains firmly on course to hit this target.”
Between 2019 and 2020, the retailer plans to open a further 130 new stores, while continuing to invest in its Project Fresh initiative – a £300m investment to create more in-store space for fresh, chilled and food-to-go ranges as well as simpler layouts, improved fixtures and brighter, wider aisles. Over 200 existing stores will have been converted to the new format by the end of this year and a further 380 stores by the end of 2021.
To fuel its expanded store network, three new regional distribution centres are planned for Sheppey, Sawley and Bedford in the coming years, as well as extensions to existing centres in Darlington and Bathgate. The company said this proposed expansion would create 5,000 new jobs over the next two years.
Aldi’s Nuneaton Store
PHOTO: Simon Hadley Photography.