Customer values can often change the way a company does business, and no one knows that better than ALDI. Last year, the grocery store chain began catering to health-conscious shoppers by offering more organic food options, which led some to speculate that it was trying to take on competitor Whole Foods.
While the jury is still out on that point, the retailer has continued trying to improve its stores to appeal to young, frugal shoppers. In an announcement made on Wednesday, it stated that it will be investing $1.6 billion to remodel and expand over 1,300 U.S. stores by 2020.
“The new ALDI store look delivers on its customers’ desire for a modern and convenient shopping experience with a focus on fresh items, including more robust produce, dairy and bakery sections,” the company said.
The company stated that the remodeled stores will feature a modern design that includes open ceilings and more natural lighting. The materials used to remodel the stores will be made from recycled and environmentally-friendly building materials.
In addition to the revamped aesthetic, CEO Jason Hart says that ALDI will also be improving its products to make them more natural, without creating additional costs for shoppers.
“We’ve also made a number of improvements to our products – such as removing added MSG, certified synthetic colors and partially hydrogenated oils from all our ALDI exclusive brand foods. But the one thing that hasn’t changed is that our customers still save money on the groceries they buy most,” he said.
ALDI currently operates in 35 states in the U.S., and boasts that it serves over 40 million customers each month. The chain has grown by 60% since 2013, and with its focus on low prices and organic foods, it stands to be a serious contender for consumers’ grocery dollars.
The company plans to open 650 new stores in the near future, and states that it will operate nearly 2,000 stores in the U.S. by the end of 2018.
“ALDI customers know we stand out from our competitors for a reason: we offer high-quality affordable food that they can feel good about serving their families. Our unmatched combination of exceptional quality and everyday low prices is why we’re one of the fastest growing retailers in the US,” said Hart.
“With this significant investment in our stores, what we’re really doing is continuing to invest in ALDI customers,” the CEO concluded.