Aldi in 2022 price pledge as chain hails 'best ever' Christmas trading
Discount supermarket chain Aldi has hailed its “best ever” Christmas after a jump in December trading as it also pledged to keep a lid on prices amid rising inflation.
The group said sales lifted 0.4 per cent compared with the same month a year earlier, when grocery stores had been buoyed by lockdown measures affecting hospitality businesses.
Aldi claimed that figures from research firm Kantar show it was the “only major supermarket” to increase its sales for December.
Giles Hurley, UK chief executive of the German-owned chain, welcomed the performance and said the retailer was boosted by strong sales of its premium product lines.
He also said the group will commit to offering shoppers the lowest grocery prices throughout 2022.
“There's no doubt that 2021 was a long and difficult year for lots of people, but our amazing colleagues stopped at nothing as they came together to deliver the Christmas that our customers deserved,” Hurley said.
“As we look ahead, the top priority for most families this year will be managing their household budgets in the face of rising living costs. As the cheapest supermarket in Britain, Aldi will always offer the lowest prices for groceries, no matter what, and continue to support our British farmers and producers.”
During the festive period, Aldi sold more than 43 million mince pies and 118 million Brussels sprouts.
The retailer, which has some 950 stores across the UK, is set to continue its rapid expansion over the new year, with plans to open more than 100 sites, including several in Scotland.Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at financial services group Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The Christmas shopping season is akin to the world cup for retailers and Aldi UK is on a winning streak, not just notching up record sales but attracting half a million new customers.
“It pulled off the impressive tactic of pulling in shoppers attracted by a bargain, and upselling premium products to them, with trollies piled high with luxury treats and alcohol.
"That’s no mean feat at a time when millions of consumers are facing an income squeeze, but it seems shoppers were determined to have a blow-out Christmas after the previous celebrations were dampened by lockdowns.
"Discounters like Aldi should continue to benefit from the income squeeze, with shoppers tempted to seek out cheaper products and downscale from more expensive brands,” she added.
David Beard, chief executive of financial comparison site Lendingexpert.co.uk noted: “I’m not in the least bit surprised Aldi had its best-ever Christmas as consumers desperately look to save money wherever they can.
“Aldi is consistently cheaper than the other major supermarket retailers - it would appear the snobbery surrounding discounted grocers is melting away and replaced for a thirst for a bargain.
“I predict Aldi will continue to increase its market share this year with all of us needing to find the extra pennies to pay for expensive energy bills, a hike in national insurance and interest rates. Aldi does need to find a way to make their stores more accessible for customers who just want a few items though because long queues at the checkout could put small basket shoppers off.”