Mar 7, 2024 - Business

Aldi unveils expansion with 800 new stores in 5 years

Aldi storefront at night

Aldi is known for its low prices and cheap wine. Photo: Kelly Tyko/Axios

Discount grocer Aldi unveiled a five-year expansion plan Thursday to add 800 stores nationwide by the end of 2028.

Why it matters: The nation's fastest-growing grocery chain's expansion will "ramp up the competitive pressure in the grocery market," said Neil Saunders, GlobalData managing director.

  • "Aldi's influence on the market should not be underestimated," Saunders said. "The company's price-leadership can force other retailers into reducing their own prices to compete."

Driving the news: Aldi said in its announcement that it will invest more than $9 billion over five years for the expansion, which includes adding nearly 330 stores to the Northeast and Midwest and continuing to grow in the West with "more stores in Southern California and Phoenix."

  • The company also announced Thursday that it has completed the acquisition of Southeastern Grocers and will start a phased store conversion process for a "significant number" of Winn-Dixie and Harveys Supermarket stores.

The big picture: Aldi has seen more shoppers flock to its stores as the company has continued its U.S. expansion and shoppers look to save, Scott Patton, the retailer's vice president of national buying, previously told Axios.

  • There are currently 2,361 U.S. locations in 38 states and Washington D.C.

What's next: The Southeastern Grocers store conversion process should begin in the second half of 2024 for approximately 50 stores, Aldi said, noting the majority of these locations would reopen in 2025.

Why Aldi is different from other stores

Aldi stores are smaller than your neighborhood Kroger or Publix with less selection — more than 90% of Aldi products are private label.

Here are a few other ways Aldi is different than traditional grocery stores:

  • Bring a quarter to shop at Aldi if you want to "rent" a shopping cart, which is a more common practice in Europe.
  • Don't forget reusable bags as Aldi doesn't provide free bags but does sell paper and a variety of other bags.
  • Aldi Finds are the retailer's limited-time items and are located on an aisle that has many nicknames including, "Aisle of Shame" or "fun aisle."

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