German discounters keep moving up in the United Kingdom: Aldi and Lidl saw their combined market share grow from 5.4 % to 9 % in three years, which means Aldi is now the country's sixth largest retailer, now ahead of Waitrose.
Aldi changes places with Waitrose
The big four still dominate the British market: Tesco has a 29.4 % market share, Asda and Sainsbury's make up the top three (17.1 and 16.4 %) and Morrisons has 10.9 %. The German discount chains Aldi and Lidl have now moved up to 6th and 8th position, just behind fifth ranked The Co-op with 6.1 %. Aldi is sixth with a 5.3 % market share, while Waitrose has 5.1 % and Lidl has 3.7 %.
The low price policy is the main reason why the German chains have moved up, especially as over the past few years the British economy was struggling. Over the past four years, Aldi managed a double-digit sales growth per year - reaching 16.8 % in the last year. The growth was both because of a whopping 500,000 extra customers, but also owing to an increase of customer's average spending by 7 %.
Despite an increased effort from the "big four" to lower their costs and to compete with the German competition, a majority of the new Aldi and Lidl customers still came from Britain's four main chains.