Aldi, which has operated an online store in China since 2017, will be opening two physical stores in Shanghai, China, on June 7th, according to RetailDetail.
RetailDetail reports that this is the beginning of a large expansion project and an effort to attract China’s growing middle class population. Specialist website Lebensmittel Zeitung reports that Aldi wants to be more “up-market” in China than it is in other countries where Aldi stores are located.
Business publication Manager Magazin says, according to dw.com, that Aldi’s starting goal is to open 10 stores in China, eventually working up to 50 to 100 stores throughout the next few years. The publication also says the Shanghai stores will sell familiar Aldi products from Europe and, in addition, will feature a large fresh fish counter.
“This is another step in the race between Aldi and Lidl worldwide,” trade expert Matthias Queck from LZ Retailytics told German news agency dpa.
Aldi’s competition has stopped its efforts to break into the Chinese market, leaving it open for Aldi to attempt expansion there.
IGD analyst Nick Miles, quoted in RetailDetail, says China will surpass the U.S. as the world’s largest FMCG (fast-moving consumer goods) market within four years. He also states China’s growing middle class is looking for purchase quality products imported from Europe. He states that Chinese consumers tend to prefer name brands over private labels, but Aldi is known as a “very sharp private label player.”