Move over Woolworths, Coles and Aldi – there’s a new kid in town. German supermarkerket Kaufland has just entered Melbourne looking for a piece of Australia’s $90 billion grocery pie.
With stores up to five times larger than Australian grocery chains Woolworths and Coles, Kaufland has secured its first Melbourne site in the suburb of Dandenong. The discount supermarket retailer has purchased an ex-Bunnings site for $16.4 million which will become its new storefront.
This isn’t its first site, with Kaufland forking out a further $25 million for a super site in Adelaide’s CBD fringe two months ago. In the last year it has spent considerable resources to analyse the Australian market for feasibility and scout locations for its “super” markets, which are on average four to five times larger than its competition Coles and Woolies.
Kaufland is similar to Costco, only without the membership. Its Australian stores will reportedly span 20,000 square meters, which is just under five acres, selling everything from fuits, chocolate, diapers and luggage, to computers and and ladders.
Australia is the first English speaking country that the Schwartz Group-owned retailer has opened in, despite it operating over 1,230 stores in eastern and central European countries.
While German-based Aldi stores stock its own branded products, Kaufland sells thousands of household brands. Retail analysts say that in order for the newcomer to be viable and successful in Australia, it would need to open at least 20 stores here.
Headquartered in Neckarsulm Germany, Kaufland is a subsidiary of the Schwarz Group, the world’s fourth-largest retailer. As a grocery chain, the company says it’s committed its customers having access to a wide range of products at reasonable prices. It stocks up to 60,000 product lines, some of which are its home branded K-Classic products. Kaufland operates stores in Germany, the Czech Republic, Poland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania and Slovakia with more than 150,000 employees across Europe.