Aldi and Lidl grab 10% share of British grocery retail market for first time

Gill McShane

While the overall British grocery retail landscape remains sluggish, discount retailers Aldi and Lidl have reached new heights; attaining a combined 10% share of the market for the first time, as revealed in the latest grocery share figures from Kantar Worldpanel, published today for the 12 weeks ended November 8, 2015

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“If you look back as recently as 2012, Aldi and Lidl only held a 5% share of the market, and it had previously taken them nine years to double their combined share from 2.5%,” explains Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel.

“In the last 12 weeks the two retailers have attracted another additional million shoppers compared with last year, while average spend per trip has increased by 4% to £18.85, which is 78p ahead of the total retailer average. The discounters show no sign of stopping and with plans to open hundreds of stores between them, they’ll noticeably widen their reach to the British population.”

Lidl’s market share reached a new record high of 4.4%, increasing by 0.7% on last year thanks to a sales growth of 19%. Aldi grew sales by 16.5%, keeping its market share at 5.6% for the fifth consecutive month.

Grocery market share (12 weeks ended November 8)

Tesco 27.9%

Sainsbury’s 16.6%

Asda 16.4%

Morrisons 10.8%

The Co-operative 6.3%

Aldi 5.6%

Waitrose 5.2%

Lidl 4.4%

Iceland 1.9%

Symbols & Independents 2%

Other outlets 2.8%

Sluggish market overall

Despite the ever more high-profile Christmas advertising campaigns launched by the supermarkets in recent weeks, Kantar Worldpanel says the overall grocery market remains slow.

Total sales were only up by 0.5% in the latest 12-week period, held back by persistently falling prices, which remained down by 1.7% on a like-for-like basis.

Sainsbury’s has seen its fourth consecutive period of growth, flying in the face of tough market conditions,” Fraser McKevitt continues. “It’s 1.5% increase in sales was sufficiently ahead of the market for the retailer to increase its share by 0.2 percentage points [to 16.6%] – the first share gain registered by any of the ‘big four’ retailers since October 2014.

“Sainsbury’s performance means it has once again regained its position as Britain’s second-largest supermarket, pushing ahead of Asda in the latest 12 weeks. The food-focused retailer traditionally increases its market share over Christmas, so we can expect to see it keep hold of second place for the time being.”

Sales fell at the rest of the major retailers – at Asda’s they fell by 3.5%, and at Tesco they were down by 2.5%, while Morrisons saw its sales fall by 1.7%. With a raft of recent announcements including a range reduction and increasing click-and-collect opportunities in its stores, Asda will be looking to improve upon its sales decline in the coming weeks.

Outside of the big four retailers, growing revenues this quarter were recorded for Waitrose and the Co-operative, where sales were up by 2.7% and 1.5% respectively.

The Co-operative’s market share gain of 0.1% to 6.3% is the convenience chain’s first year-on-year share gain since 2011, when the benefits of the Somerfield acquisition were still being felt.

Kantar Worldpanel claims grocery inflation in Great Britain now stands at -1.7% for the 12-week period ended November 8, 2015. This means shoppers are now paying less for a representative basket of groceries than they did in 2014. This is the same fall as reported last month.

The analyst says the falling prices reflect the impact of Aldi and Lidl and the market’s competitive response, as well as deflation in some major categories including eggs, butter, bread, crisps and fresh poultry.

UK consumer spend 12 weeks to 8 November 2015



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