Retailer says it sold 55m mince pies and 22m pigs in blankets in run-up to Christmas
Christmas sales at Aldi topped £1bn for the first time, as the German-owned discount supermarket continued its rapid expansion in the UK.
Sales in UK in the four weeks to Christmas Eve rose by 7.9% compared with the same trading period of the previous year, the grocer said on Monday. The company did not report a like-for-like sales figure.
Aldi aims to increase its UK chain from 874 stores to 1,200 by 2025.
The growth has weighed on profits as it pours money into new stores and cutting prices to boost sales. Figures published in September showed that Aldi’s 2018 profits fell by almost a fifth as it invested £530m in expansion.
Aldi’s share of the UK grocery market stands at 8%, having increased by 0.4% during the past 12 months, it said. It is the UK’s fifth largest grocery retailer.
The arrival of Aldi and its German discount rival Lidl has challenged incumbent competitors. The two companies’ combined market share rose from 13.2% to 14.1% in the 12 months to the end of November 2019, according to data from Kantar Worldpanel. Tesco and Sainsbury both lost 0.3 percentage points of share in the same period, to 27.3% and 15.7% respectively, while Morrison lost 0.4 points to 10.1%.
Aldi said that increased sales of alcohol, meat and its premium Specially Selected range were behind the sales increase. Sales in the beers, wine and spirits category increased by 9.2% year on year, with sparkling wines up by 14%, while sales of Specially Selected products and meat both rose by 8%.
Giles Hurley, the Aldi UK chief executive, said: “More customers than ever before shopped with us this Christmas.”
He added: “Although we saw strong growth across all key categories, sales of our premium Specially Selected range surpassed expectations.”
During the period, Aldi sold 55m mince pies, 22m pigs in blankets and more than 2m Christmas puddings.