Aldi overtakes Waitrose in the supermarket stakes

The latest grocery share figures from Kantar Worldpanel reveal that German-owned discounter Aldi – a major supported of British meat – has leap-frogged Waitrose to become the UK’s sixth largest supermarket.

Figures for the 12 weeks ended March 29, 2015, give Aldi 5.3% of the grocery market, 0.7% more than the same 12 weeks in 2014. Waitrose increased just 0.1% to 5.2%.

The head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, Fraser McKevitt, said Aldi had recorded double-digit sales growth for the past four years.

“Growth has been fuelled by more than half a million new shoppers choosing to visit Aldi this year and average basket sizes increasing by 7%,” he added. “The German discounter’s sales have increased by 16.8% in the latest period, still high compared to other retailers but slower relative to its recent performance.”

Lidl was the only other supermarket to increase its market share, adding 0.3% to reach 3.7%, helped by 12.1% sales growth.

All other retailers saw their market share fall, with Tesco dropping 0.2% to 28.4%; Asda down 0.3% to 17.1%; Sainsbury’s down 0.1% at 16.4%; Morrisons down 0.2% at 10.9% and the Co-Operative down 0.1% at 6.0%.

“The changing structure of Britain’s supermarket landscape is illustrated by two facts,” Mr McKevitt added. “First, the so called discounters Aldi and Lidl now command a combined 9.0% share of the market. In 2012 the same two retailers only accounted for 5.4% of grocery sales. Second, the 72.8% share taken by the biggest four retailers is now at its lowest level in a decade.”

Kantart Worldpanel said consumers continued to benefit from falling prices. All major supermarkets were offering higher levels of promotions, and as a result groceries were now 2.0% cheaper than they were a year ago.

The news of Aldi’s latest market share figures coincided with the supermarket announcing that it will open nine new stores in and around London this year as part of its growth plan. A new £60 million regional distribution centre for Wales and the South-west, based near Cardiff, was also recently announced, by the retailer, and there are even suggestions that it’s considering online sales.

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