Discount supermarket Lidl to create 5,000 jobs in London
LONDON: German discount supermarket group Lidl announced plans Friday to create 5,000 new jobs in London as part of a major investment program in Britain, where it is enjoying rapid growth.
The food retailer said it will open 250 shops in the capital after unveiling a three-year, £1.5 billion ($1.9 billion, 1.8 billion-euro) investment plan last year that will more than double the number of stores in Britain to 1,500. The group also received permission from local authorities Thursday to build a £70 million new headquarters in the Kingston area of southwest London, subject to approval from the mayor.
Lidl, which currently employs 19,000 people in Britain, has also announced plans to open three new depots in northern, central and south west England, creating an additional 1,500 jobs. In recent years, Lidl and its German rival Aldi have boomed in Britain, wooing bargain-seekers away from traditional supermarkets Asda, Morrison, Sainsbury’s and Tesco. Between mid-September and early December, Lidl increased its market share in Britain to 4.6 percent, while Aldi took 6.2 percent, with both appearing to be weathering the uncertainty surrounding Brexit.
Aldi has also stepped up plans for expansion, announcing a £300 million investment in September to revamp its stores over the next three years. Lidl’s expansion is positive news for London amid concerns about inward investment following the June referendum vote to leave the European Union. — Reuters