German discounter Lidl has announced a €200 million investment in Ireland this year, the largest of its kind since entering the market in 2000.
The retailer will invest in both its store network and in a new distribution centre to bolster its portfolio of 154 stores in the Republic, according to the Sunday Independent.
Lidl has 10.5% of the Irish grocery market share, coming in at number four of top Irish retailers, according to the most recent figures by Kantar Worldpanel. It has also overtaken its direct competitor Aldi at 10.3%.
The largest single project for 2018 will be Lidl’s new distribution centre in Newbridge, Co Kildare, which will cost approximately €80 million, and be the size of about three Aviva stadia. The facility received planning permission three weeks ago and will begin construction next month.
As many as 100 permanent jobs will come on stream next year when the warehouse is in full operation, adding to the 250 already working there.
The retailer has said that the new facility would be good news for Irish food and drink suppliers as Lidl purchases of Irish-sourced goods are now valued at over €700 million, with total Irish export sales to Lidl stores surpassing €200 million per year.
Lidl also has several new stores planned, while two will be knocked down and rebuilt in the discounter’s modern format. The retailer’s store in Nenagh, Co Tipperary, will be relocated.
New store openings are planned for Grangegorman, Dublin; Dunshaughlin, Co Meath; Santry, Dublin; and Sligo. Stores will be rebuilt in Fortunestown, Co Dublin, and Castlerea, Co Roscommon.
Construction will begin on a site in Castleknock, Dublin, in the coming months, subject to appeals.
Last month, the High Court dismissed Judicial Review proceedings challenging Bord Pleanála's decision to grant permission for a mixed-use residential and retail development at the West Dublin site, which includes the Lidl store.
Other proposed new stores, such as one in Bray, Co Wicklow, are still in process of the planning system.
Lidl’s planned store openings in Limerick city were restricted in size by An Bord Pleanála, after Tesco lodged an appeal. This led to the German discounter reportedly accusing Tesco of being a “serial objector”, claiming the UK retailer had lodged 20 appeals against its projects.
© 2018 - Checkout Magazine by Kevin Duggan