In a strategic move aimed at enhancing its presence, Aldi has announced a significant investment exceeding £550m ($696.6m) to bolster its store and distribution network throughout 2024.
The investment encompasses a dual focus on establishing new stores nationwide while also modernising existing ones and reinforcing distribution centres to facilitate growth.
This ambitious expansion initiative is anticipated to create more than 1,500 new job opportunities across various regions in the UK.
The surge in employment prospects extends beyond the unveiling of new stores, encompassing roles within the company’s existing stores, regional distribution centres, and UK offices.
Currently boasting a network of more than 1,000 stores across the UK, Aldi remains steadfast in its commitment to fulfilling its long-term objective of reaching 1,500 locations.
This strategic manoeuvre is underscored by the burgeoning demand for its distinctive blend of high-quality and cost-effective offerings.
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The investment declaration comes on the heels of Aldi’s triumphant Christmas season, marking its most robust performance to date.
Furthermore, the supermarket said it has ramped up its support for British suppliers and growers, who contribute approximately three-quarters of its product offerings.
Aldi’s steadfast commitment to fostering fair and transparent relationships with its suppliers has been underscored by its consistent top ranking in the Groceries Supply Code of Practice annual survey for the past decade.
Giles Hurley, Aldi UK and Ireland’s CEO, underscored the rationale behind the expansion drive, emphasising the need to address untapped markets and bolster existing footprints to cater to growing consumer demand.
Hurley explained: “There are still areas of the country that don’t have an Aldi, or that need more or larger stores to meet demand. That is what our 2024 expansion plans aim to address. We now have more than 1,000 stores across the UK but there are plenty more Aldi stores still to come, in 2024 and beyond.”
Aldi is actively seeking prime real estate opportunities, targeting town-centre or edge-of-town sites spanning approximately 1.5 acres.
These sites will ideally accommodate a 20,000ft² store with adequate parking facilities and convenient access, situated in proximity to main thoroughfares for heightened visibility.
In a significant stride toward prioritising employee welfare, Aldi recently announced a pioneering move to guarantee its store and warehouse staff a minimum hourly wage of £12, effective from 1 February 2024.
This landmark decision positioned Aldi as the first supermarket to align its wage rates with the Real Living Wage, as stipulated by the Living Wage Foundation.
The implementation of this new minimum wage rate, coupled with Aldi’s ongoing £67m investment in colleague pay, underscores the supermarket’s unwavering commitment to fostering a supportive and rewarding work environment, setting a notable precedent within the industry.