Supermarket News Reporter Neil Stern recently characterized Lidl, the European grocer that is making plans to open stores in the Eastern U.S., as a formidable threat to U.S. supermarkets. Stern cited Lidl's similarities to European counterpart Aldi, and noted Aldi's measured approach to the American market and their ability to adapt their concept to U.S. tastes. Stern believes Lidl will learn from Aldi's approach, while also taking note of Tesco's disastrous experience with Fresh & Easy stores on the west coast.
According to Stern, Lidl's assortment will be heavy on private label products and feature more SKUs than Aldi. Initially, Stern believes Lidl will carry several national brands in order to accelerate consumer acceptance of the format.
Published reports have indicated that Lidl stores may not open until 2018.