Discount supermarket chain Aldi is extending its smaller “local” format to seven stores after a successful trial in south London, the company said.
The new stores will offer food-on-the-go and “food for tonight” as Aldi attempts to increase its presence in the capital, which is dominated by larger rivals Tesco and Sainsbury’s through their convenience stores.
The Aldi Local shops, which are about half the size of a standard store, will open next Thursday, with outlets in Kilburn, Tooting, Kingston, Romford and Eastcote all undergoing changes.
The former Waitrose store in Camden, north London, will also be converted into an Aldi Local, with the company saying the new name is to “help shoppers distinguish between smaller city stores in London and the conventional-sized Aldis”.
Each store will also have fewer items available, with 1,500 lines, rather than 1,800, and there will be no non-food products.
If successful, Aldi plans to identify further sites in cities to take on its rivals, following its debut Local store in Balham, south London.
The decision comes as rival Lidl revealed plans for its first central London store as part of a £500 million expansion.
Aldi insists it is not attempting to move into the convenience store market, but wants more high street stores where car parking might not be available and hopes the tweaks will get more shoppers through the doors.
However, the expansion is expected to move slowly due to lack of available space and also because rents in city centres tend to be far higher than traditional Aldi sites.