Lidl Prepares U.S. Store Launch

Lidl is ready to take on the retail market in the U.S. The supermarket operator, which earlier in the year announced it would open 20 stores in the U.S. this summer, has set a grand opening date of June 15.

Already, the U.S. retail market is preparing for 100 Lidl stores that should represent the first wave of the German retailer’s store introduction strategy, which is focused on the middle of the Atlantic seaboard, including North and South Carolina and Virginia, where the U.S. business is based.

Lidl is the most direct rival of Aldi in Europe and uses the same kind of grocery-focused low-price strategy, dubbed deep discount, keeping formats small and simple, while merchandising directly from shipped cartons. The company operates 10,000 stores in 27 countries.

Lidl is generally considered a bit more polished in terms of its approach than Aldi. However, Aldi has been dressing up its stores and polishing up its merchandising, partly in anticipation of Lidl’s U.S. arrival.

Earlier this year, Aldi announced that it would spend more than $1.6 billion to remodel and expand more than 1,300 U.S. stores by 2020. Already, Aldi has embarked on an accelerated growth plan to open 650 new stores across the U.S. By the end of 2018, Aldi expects to operate about 2,000 stores in the U.S.