Thread Number: 75757  /  Tag: Recipes, Cooking Accessories
Too Lidl, too late?
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Post# 995897   6/1/2018 at 09:40 by joeekaitis (Rialto, California, USA)        

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Here in California, ALDI incinerated their bare-bones grocery store competition, mainly Save-A-Lot, in a matter of weeks well after Fresh & Easy left the scene.  To paraphrase, thrifty shoppers abhor a vacuum.


Meanwhile, the press hailed Lidl as the only grocer that might have ALDI quaking in their lederhosen.  Must be true!  It's on the news, right?  Well . . .


Might it have turned out differently if Lidl had arrived sooner or even invaded from the west?  Just a thought.


Post# 995916 , Reply# 1   6/1/2018 at 14:03 by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
A new Lidl

Is open in Winston Salem, I love it!

Post# 995917 , Reply# 2   6/1/2018 at 14:15 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        

Tesco was also supposed to have set up shop stateside by now.
One thing all retailers suffer of, especially in food is plenty of competition.
Every time a new store opens near another, it can suffer. We used to have a uniform commercial code that prohibited malicious competition, for at least a few years.
I think Walmart got that one deleted.
I think Lidl shops have even less square footage than Aldi stores do. It's in a different shopping class demographic segment. Edeka shops compete more with Lidl.
Aldi also owns Trader Joes, a budget gourmet store.
Waitrose in England is like what to Trader Joes is to Aldi.

California already has plenty. Albertsons, Ralphs, Vons, Stater Bros., Safeway, etc., etc. Back east, they have Stop & Shop in NJ. Kroger has a small shop division as well. Now if all those 7-11's were to disapear, there might be room for Lidl.
There will soon be 72 more empty Sears stores.
Mall grocery anchors never took of in the US like in Canada, and Australia.
In the suburbs, farm to table is a big new attraction. You should see the new farmers market they're building at our local park.
It's been popular for years already in Chicago, L.A., etc.

Post# 995921 , Reply# 3   6/1/2018 at 14:51 by joeekaitis (Rialto, California, USA)        
Tesco was also supposed to have set up shop stateside by now

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They tried.  Remember Fresh & Easy?  Started here in Sunny SoCal, spread to Nevada, taken over by a local investor, and looked like they were roaring back to life when the Nevada stores went to 24 hours and several Southern California locations extended their hours 6:00am to midnight.


Then out of the blue came the "A Special Message to Our Fresh & Easy Friends" email announcing the end.

Post# 996005 , Reply# 4   6/2/2018 at 15:36 by liamy1 (-)        

Supermarket competition is a strange beast, even causing problems for companies like Walmart.

Walmart wholly owns the ASDA chain here in the UK, their vision was to bring “Walmart to the British shopper” unfortunately that doesn’t seem to have happened in the sense Walmart wanted, nor have they seen quite the results they wanted (despite owning ASDA for about 20 years now).

Just this month, there has been an announcement that Sainsbury’s (the UKs oldest and at one time biggest supermarket chain) is looking to buy ASDA and then Walmart would be looking to take a portion of the 2 companies combined. Although to many this makes no sense at all, out of all the U.K. chains you couldn’t get 2 supermarkets as different to each other as Sainsbury’s and Asda.

This is currently going through completion authorities as it would create a massive chain with over a third of the UK grocery market, unlike the US, in the U.K. gone are the days when supermarkets chains were regional, they stretch the length and breadth of the country, of course certain chains have a heavier presence in certain areas to others (eg more stores in the North or visa versa), but a chain you’d find in London, you’d find it in Scotland (the one exception is Booths - high end chain store based in the North of England).

Other issue, and I don’t know if the US has this, UK chains have a “Hierachy” and get caught up with British class system (because us Brits are obsessed with class) and certain chains are seen as much better than others, and some will purely shop at one store vs another because of the message they think it conveys about them to others.

To answer your question, UK is a much smaller country than the US, with a 5th of the population, but we have Aldi and Lidl IN ABUNDANCE and have for a while, they’re still opening opening stores like madmen and in some areas (like mine) they’re almost next door to each other and they’re both doing fine, in fact causing big headaches for the original “big” chains. So as it works here with less shoppers, I can see it working over there.

Post# 996051 , Reply# 5   6/3/2018 at 04:00 by iej (Ireland)        

Lidl and Aldi also changed their approach here in Ireland by going slightly more mainstream and improving their stores, adding some branded items, better layouts, in store bakery etc etc

When they launched here first they were very hard discounters and a lot of people were either wary of them as the stores looked grim and had “weird” German own label products, or they were total snobs and didn’t want to be seen shopping is them but then they moved towards getting their positioning right with a big focus on organic, on locally produced, “specially selected” at Aldi and all of that stuff and suddenly they took a big chunk of the market.

The order of market share here is :

1. SuperValu (Musgraves - they’re nothing to do with the US chain of the same name). They’re an Irish owned “symbol group” with a high % of independently owned stores and are generally at the high end of the market, with a very “foodie vibe”. They tend to be locally owned in a lot of towns and have a real personality and a personal touch. You’ll still get things like help with bags, friendly deli and butchers counters, chef demos, the store owner often being present on the floor, loads of local sponsorship of community events and sports and ranges of local products that you’ll often not find anywhere else. Many of their stores often have really outstanding bakeries and even nice touches like the music is always great and they do things like low sensory stimulus times with slightly subdued lighting, no shelf stacking and no or very soft music, specifically for parents with kids who’ve autism or behavioral issues, or people who just like a chilled out shop.

2. Dunnes Sfores - Irish owned (by a single family) and operate an increasingly mid-high end approach. They’ve repositioned slightly upmarket and have very plush supermarkets. They also have a big fashion and homewares side (usually collocated with the food/grocery much like M&S only more mainstream grocery).

3. Tesco Ireland - similar to Tesco in the UK but they largely bought-in here in the 1990s by purchasing a chain called that operated two brands: Quinsworth & Crazy Prices.

4. Lidl and Aldi then occupy a big chunk of fhe market..

5. Marks and Spencer - a bit niche thought, but can be found in all the cities and most regional towns.

There are a few independent stores around and some odd ones like Iceland which have minimal impact.

Some places, notably Cork City also still have amazing indoor traditional food markets if you want to really go pepper grocery shopping.

This post was last edited 06/03/2018 at 13:09
Post# 996053 , Reply# 6   6/3/2018 at 06:08 by mrboilwash (Munich,Germany)        

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"UK chains have a “Hierachy” and get caught up with British class system" *LOL*
We had the same kind of attitude towards ALDI until the late 1980s.
Today it`s no disgrace at all for the rich to drive up their Porsche to an ALDI or LIDL store and get a carton of real champagne amongst other staples.

Post# 996054 , Reply# 7   6/3/2018 at 06:16 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Change is constant

in this industry. I'm glad I'm finished with it though.
I'm not Kroger customer, but we picked up a cake our daughter ordered for the grand daughters birthday party yesterday there. The newer store had a Fred Meyer jewelry store in it, a Citizens bank, sells house wares, clothing, etc. Maybe too large for seniors, but very nice.
The cake was delicious too. Obviously not a frozen sheet cake, then decorated on site, but store baked, with cake flour, as it was very light and moist. The butter cream was not too sweet, or greasy tasting.
The large image display area sales floor has alpha numeric inlays where shipper displays or pallets are placed, so the staff reads the plan-o-grams on computer, and places them where they go by the set up guides.

Post# 996064 , Reply# 8   6/3/2018 at 08:40 by liamy1 (-)        

Ha! Same here, you often now see high end sports cars, Range Rovers and the like in Aldi and Lidl car parks.

How times have changed! Just as @iej says, at one time Aldi and Lidl were seen as very hard discounters, no products that would be recognised and stores were definitely not the same as standard chains. Anyone who shopped there would certainly never admit it.

Now, you can hardly tell if you are in an Aldi or a Tesco and people absolutely shout from the rooftops if they’re an Aldi or Lidl shopper,

Post# 996073 , Reply# 9   6/3/2018 at 09:33 by jamiel (Detroit, Michigan)        

yeah, I think Lidl done messed up...between Aldi and Save-a-Lot there isn't much room for anyone else in that genre...Aldi is clearly the leader, is now revamping aggressively their 15-20 year old stores (cutting off the top at least to add an extra shelf level) if not building anew. They do a nice job of serving the middle market--something akin to a small-format no-membership Costco. Save-a-Lot is a franchised business (spun off from SuperValu recently) which is widely variable area to area. In a year or so Lidl will be gone, selling their locations off to Aldi or Food Lion.

Post# 996077 , Reply# 10   6/3/2018 at 09:55 by joeekaitis (Rialto, California, USA)        
Our ALDI in Rialto is being built from the ground up.

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It'll be interesting to see the difference between a custom-built store and one in a strip mall like the ALDI in Highland, California where I shop on the way home from work.  Dare we hope it'll have the fresh bread bakery being tested on the East Coast?


Have to remember to wear my "Fresh & Easy REFUGEE" t-shirt to the grand opening.

Post# 996079 , Reply# 11   6/3/2018 at 10:16 by joeekaitis (Rialto, California, USA)        
And then there's Wakefern Food Corp.

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They're succeeding on both major fronts: full-service supermarket and cost-cutter bag-yer-own.  It's a safe bet a few SoCal chains are sending fact-finding missions to Wakefern Food Corp. to pick up a few pointers on how to push the shopping cart in both directions at the same time.


Post# 996103 , Reply# 12   6/3/2018 at 17:14 by iej (Ireland)        

Just to give you a sense of Irish supermarket quirkiness

Dunnes Stores :

doing an in-store fashion show in the middle of a fresh produce section.

These guys used to be in the "discounter" supermarket space..

Quite a dramatic reposition, but pretty nice place to shop.

This post was last edited 06/03/2018 at 22:36
Post# 996117 , Reply# 13   6/3/2018 at 20:44 by liamy1 (-)        
We lost....

Our Dunnes Stores here in England in February this year.

My nearest one was the 3rd last in the country to close.

Post# 996134 , Reply# 14   6/4/2018 at 04:49 by iej (Ireland)        

Unfortunately, they basically saw Brexit as a huge risk and pulled the plug.
Their plan was to expand in the UK with another 40 stores, but then when uncertainty around Brexit happened, they just decided to cut risk exposure. They either needed to expand or leave- economies of scale matter.

They’re not a plc and are still a family owned business, so there’s no aggressive shareholders to answer to. Typically they fairly cautious and own almosf all of their own stores locations outright and lease very little. So I would say they simply didn’t like the mood music in Britain at the moment and decided to minimize risk. Also their home market is booming and investment seems to be going into enhancing and expanding their stores here.

Explains a bit of background to it:

They’ve about 160 stores in Ireland and 5 in Spain concentrated around Malaga.

They could well renter the British market when things are more predictable in the future.

Post# 996143 , Reply# 15   6/4/2018 at 08:33 by liamy1 (-)        

Say I blame them.

I know we can’t discuss politics on this forum, so will only say it was the stupidest thing Britain has ever done.

Post# 996161 , Reply# 16   6/4/2018 at 10:02 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Given the wide

expanse of globalization, it is very different than when Woodrow Wilson tried protectionism and tariff's. It didn't even work then.
I met several displaced Delphi employees back in 2006 when they filed bankruptcy before GM tell me they wished we had another Wilson.
What I find ironic, is that in each and every year the GM parts and trim divisions ran inefficiently through the 60's, 70's and 80's, and with price increases through the 90's, they managed to make profits. GM cars weighed 800 pounds less in 1977 for full size, and 600 less in 1978 for mid size. They were making way more per pound even after the UAW pay increases. I don't even recall a strike after 1972. Shame on them. Yes I know all the Flint plants were old, but they built a new one in the 80's there, and it had excellent quality reviews for the Buck LeSabre, Pontiac Bonneville, and Olds Delta 88.

Post# 996164 , Reply# 17   6/4/2018 at 10:23 by iej (Ireland)        

Aldi and Lidl are still expanding in the UK though, right?

Post# 996177 , Reply# 18   6/4/2018 at 12:44 by liamy1 (-)        
Aldi and Lidl are still expanding in the UK though, right?

Yes, like there’s no tomorrow.

Not long back, read an article on Aldi’s expansion plans and how many stores they’re looking to open by a set date (I think 2020), they have some towns pegged for needing EIGHT Aldi stores.

That’s bonkers surely?

Saying that, where I am does have a lot too - within a 10 mile radius of my house, there is 30 Aldi stores and 14 Lidl stores (but of course this isn’t all one town, this is just a 10 mile circle around).

But this is added to 14 Tesco’s, 23 Sainsbury’s, 11 Morrison’s, 4 Asda’s

Post# 996182 , Reply# 19   6/4/2018 at 14:48 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
There were also zero

pension or other legacy fund deficit's before the bankruptcies either.
I think it was all manipulated. Nissan, Honda, Hyundai/Kia, and Toyota don't sell that many more units than they were before then.

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