Discount stores Aldi and Lidl create 1000 jobs

By Michael Stones

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags George osborne

The hard discount store chains created a total of 1,000 jobs Last week, as Lidl and Aldi both unveiled two new distribution centres, with 500 jobs a piece. This week’s Good week, bad week also reports good news for whisky drinkers, Charlie Bigham and Frank Roberts Bakery.

Lidl announced plans at the beginning of the week for a 41,806m2​ distribution centre in the west Midlands. The 500 new roles will contribute to a total of 2,500 new jobs announced last year, as part of the German-owned firm’s £220M expansion plans.

Aldi revealed another 500 jobs​ would be created with the planned opening of its £59.5M regional distribution centre in Wentlog, near Cardiff. The new centre will supply stores in south Wales and across south west England.

BHJ Ingredients created 45 new innovation roles​ after merging with two US sister firms to form Essentia Protein Solutions.

Cut duty

Drinkers also had something to celebrate last week, as the chancellor George Osborne’s last budget before May’s general election cut duty on beer, whisky and cider.

Corporation tax was also cut to 20%​ and the chancellor chose to freeze fuel duty.

But some commentators said Osborne’s generosity should have extended to a cut on the duty charged on wine. Others had wanted more help for food and drink exporters, although the chancellor did pledge to invest £7.5M in support of UK exports to China​.

Bad news

  • 2 Sisters’ debt mounts
  • Sainsbury‘s like-for-like sales fall

It was happier news for posh ready meals firm Charlie Bighams, which reported 50% year-on-year growth. The business predicted retail sales were expected to top £40M by the end of the year.

Also Frank Roberts launched a multi-million pound greenfield bakery​ at its Rudheath headquarters in Northwich, Cheshire. The new bakery can produce up to 7,000 loaves an hour.

‘Listen hard’

Good news

  • Distribution jobs: Aldi and Lidl create 1,000
  • Frank Roberts’ new bakery
  • BHJ Ingredients’ 45 new jobs
  • Charlie Bigham profits
  • Listening

There was more good news for ... listening. Morrisons new ceo David Potts told his headquarters’ team to join him spending some time over the Easter holidays working on the shop floor. He wanted the top team to “listen hard”​ to customers and store colleagues in order to find ways to improve the business.

Topping our bad news list this week is 2 Sisters Food Group, which reported rising debt in its second financial quarter, as the business battled the impact of avian influenza. 

Boparan Holdings, the firm's parent company, added £21.5M to net debt​ in the 13 weeks to the end of January. The firm's net debt now stands at £702.7M.

It was a mixed week for Sainsbury, as the nation's third largest grocer reported like-for-like sales down for a fifth consecutive quarter​. But Sainsbury had cut the price gap between it and discounters retailers, such as Aldi and Lidl, reflecting the discounters' flagging momentum, said leading City analyst Shore Capital.

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