Supermarket chain ALDI today opened their first two stores on Gran Canaria in the municipalities of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Telde. These are the island’s two main population centres, and the locations are easily accessible from the primary motorways, off the GC23 ring road and at the Melenara exit from the GC1.

Both stores were rammed full, on their first day, of people eager to find out what this new-to-the-islands store brand can offer, in Las Palmas the prices across all sectors were clearly well received as the checkout queues extended down several isles, with many locals eager to take advantage of the inaugural offers and wide range of produce on display.

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

Based on one of the main arterial routes in and out of the capital, opposite the La Bellena Centro Comercial, in the industrial zone known as Miller Bajo, on Calle Alfredo Martín Reyes, nº4 a team of 26 have been employed to work full time, of which 25 were hired through a Servicio Canario de Empleo (SCE) program, with which ALDI has been collaborating over recent months.

The Telde store is located on the Concejal Juan Rodríguez Betancourt roundabout in the Las Rubiesas industrial zone where 20 people will work, 19 of whom have also been employed through ALDI’s collaboration with the SCE.

More than a century serving shoppers

 

The Albrecht family discount chain, which now has more than 370 stores throughout Spain, was originally founded in 1946 by Karl and Theo Albrecht, after they took over their mother’s grocery store in Essen, which had been run by the family since 1913 when journeyman baker Karl Albrecht had started trading in baked goods, and a year later his wife opened the first grocery store in Essen-Schonnebeck. By 1960 the company had been split in to two, Nord and Sud, and by 1962 they had introduced the name Aldi (a syllabic abbreviation for Albrecht Diskont).

The premise on which they grew the business was very clear: if you know your customer you will always be able to give them what they need at the best price.

Post WWII Germany was a complex environment in which to operate, but the Albrechts adapted their pricing to the economic reality of the time and made a commitment to their neighbours to ensure that the communities they served always had their basic needs met, at the best quality that could be afforded.  The ethic has served them well as the company has expanded throughout Germany, Europe, the US and Australia, with both company groups employing a total of more than 250,000 people worldwide, 77,000 of which are part of the Aldi Nord group of companies in Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland, Denmark, Poland, France and Portugal, and across Spain.

These two new stores each have commercial areas of more than 1,200 m2, for now the slightly larger one (1,400 m2) being in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Both have more than 100 parking spaces each available for customers, including three recharging points for electric vehicles in the capital and two at the Telde store.

They have also adopted solar panels to generate much of the power consumed by the stores, equipping the establishments with low-energy LED lighting and automation technologies that aim to avoid product losses, that can happen due to breakdowns, and improve the operation of lighting and air conditioning. The facilities use CO2 as refrigerant gas, which, say the company, is a more sustainable and efficient alternative to other options available on the market.

At the inauguration of the capital’s Miller Bajo store, ALDI Expansion Director for the Canary Islands, Jesús García (pictured right), pointed out to Mayor Augusto Hidalgo, attending the inauguration, that 20% of the supermarket stock in the capital of Gran Canaria, “will be from local suppliers, with more than 330 items of Canarian origin, such as fresh produce, dairy products, beverages, frozen foods and cosmetics, from a total of 60 producers in the Archipelago”.

Jesús García said “we want to become the weekly purchase option for people from Las Palmas and the province’s residents”.

Mayor Hidalgo emphasised the “commitment of this company to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, as well as the boost to the economy, and the growth of employment, that the opening of this new centre represents for the city, which has registered the best levels of employability in the last 15 years despite the context of the pandemic and the difficulties that this has caused for the commercial fabric and public management”. 

The mayor spent some time mingling with shoppers and and enjoyed finding out more about several of the items on offer, including fresh produce sourced from the island, kitchenware and confectionary made here on the islands, featuring well-known brands like Tirma

At one point Hidalgo was seen waving a frying pan around with delight, to the enjoyment of the islands press photographers, who were out in force for the inaugural event.

Clearly very popular already with local shoppers and bargain hunters, it seems ALDI has a bright future here on the islands.

 

Víctor Asensio, Director of Fresh Produce for ALDI Spain, said during the inauguration of the Telde store that 80% of ALDI’s offer is of national origin, “which shows that we are committed to local products to supply our stores”.

The Telde supermarket also serves as an ALDI training store to welcome new arrivals to the company so that they can familiarise themselves with the products, processes and usual dynamics of an ALDI supermarket. As well as this one at Cruce de Melenara,  there is another training store in the Tenerife municipality of Arafo.  Two stores were opened today on Tenerife, as part of the expansion plan that ALDI is developing throughout the Canary Islands, specifically in San Cristóbal de La Laguna and in Arafo. Next month the company will open another three stores on Tenerife.  With future plans already being discussed for further openings.

The four ALDIs, which have newly opened, aim to offer residents of the islands new choice as to where they can do their weekly shop, with quality products promised at the lowest possible price.

ALDI has hired more than 80 people on the islands so far and by the end of the year, will have generated more than 240 jobs in the region, including office staff, stores and the logistics platform put into operation last May, in Arinaga.

100 or so products currently on offer can be identified with the ‘Soy canario’ brand, a label created especially by ALDI to guarantee customers that these products are made on the Canary Islands or have originated from the islands.

 

 
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