Lidl owner, Schwarz Group, will be Western Europe’s top grocery retailer by 2018, Planet Retail reports

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Middle classes are increasingly shopping in Lidl, study shows

Lidl: poised to take top slot in Western Europe

Lidl parent, Schwarz Group will overtake Carrefour as the leading retailer in Western Europe by 2018, according to Planet Retail’s Western European Trends Report.

David Gray, retail analyst, Planet Retail, said: “The discounters are now a growing force in the Western European grocery landscape, so much so that a change is in store at the very top. By 2018, according to our forecasts, Schwarz Group (famous for the successful Lidl discount concept) will overtake Carrefour as Western Europe’s largest grocery player – generating sales of more than EUR80bn (USD111bn). This is an unprecedented power shift in European retail – fuelled by the near-unstoppable growth of the format across Western European markets, bar Germany.

“This is being driven by discounters becoming more mainstream by (1) targeting high street locations, (2) listing more branded products and (3) introducing more fresh food. These fundamental changes mean this readjustment will be permanent rather than a temporary blip. The figures speak for themselves. Against a backcloth of slowing trading across Western Europe we expect the discount sector to grow sales at a compound annual growth rate of more than 4% in the five years to 2018 – with Schwarz Group outperforming the sector as a whole with growth of almost 5%. This compares to the hypermarket & superstore channel with growth of less than 2%.

“Convenience is also a burgeoning phenomenon, now one of the fastest-growing bricks and mortar channels. France and the UK will continue to drive this growth – with the UK particularly advanced, accounting for more than half the region’s top 10 convenience players. Expect further work on the roll-out of convenience formats across the region over the next 12 months – stoked by global powerhouses Carrefour and Tesco.”