Aldi becomes 6th largest UK grocer

Aldi has overtaken Waitrose as the UK’s sixth largest grocer.

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By :  ,  Financial Analyst

The success of discount supermarket Aldi shows no signs of slowing as it has been named as the UK's sixth largest grocer.

New research by Kantar Worldpanel has revealed that Aldi has now overtaken Waitrose after increasing its share of the grocery market to 5.3 per cent; Waitrose currently has 5.1 per cent. The figures represented the 12 weeks to March 29th and shows the continued shift in the supermarket sector.

While Aldi's performance is encouraging for the discounter, it was still a fair distance from the dominance of Tesco. The UK's largest supermarket improved on its recent poor performance with a 0.3 per cent rise in sales during the 12-week period providing it with a market share of 28.4 per cent.

The next target for Aldi is reaching the six per cent mark, currently held by The Co-Operative. Fellow discounter Lidl has also been performing well with a 3.7 per cent market share. Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons still remain the top four but still harbour major concerns.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said: “The changing structure of Britain’s supermarket landscape is illustrated by two facts. Firstly, the so called discounters Aldi and Lidl now command a combined nine per cent share of the market. In 2012 the same two retailers only accounted for 5.4 per cent of grocery sales."

Discounter pressure

The emergence of Aldi and Lidl has put a huge pressure on the traditional big four. Over the past 12 months, the likes of Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury's and Morrisons have all been reviewing their operations to cope with the threat posed by the discounters.

Despite being the UK's largest supermarket, Tesco announced that it would be scaling back expansion plan and closing some of the less profitable stores. Asda and Morrisons have both been making a swathe of redundancies while Sainsbury's has teamed up with Dansk Supermarked to bring Netto back to the UK to compete with the discounters.

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