Discounters Aldi and Lidl have claimed 10% of the grocery market for the first time, while Sainsbury’s is the only one of the big four to hold its ground.
Aldi grew sales by 16.5% in the 12 weeks ended November 8 to maintain its 5.6% market share, while Lidl’s market share reached a new high of 4.4% on the back of sales growth of 19%, according to figures from Kantar Worldpanel.
Aldi joint managing director, buying Jonathan Neale said: “Our sales growth and market share performance during 2015 has been incredibly strong. We’re expecting an exceptional Christmas this year after making our biggest ever investment in product innovation and range such as our award winning champagne and Specially Selected exquisite mince pies.
“Christmas is when we typically see a spike in new shoppers visiting Aldi and we expect a significant contribution to sales growth over this period from our new stores that opened during 2015.”
Kantar Worldpanel head of retail and consumer insight Fraser McKevitt said: “If you look back as recently as 2012, Aldi and Lidl only held a 5% share of the market, and it had previously taken them nine years to double their combined share from 2.5%.
“In the last 12 weeks the two retailers have attracted another additional million shoppers compared with last year, while average spend per trip has increased by 4% to £18.85, which is 78p ahead of the total retailer average.
“The discounters show no sign of stopping and with plans to open hundreds of stores between them, they’ll noticeably widen their reach to the British population.”
Sainsbury’s recorded the first share gain of any of the big four since October 2014 after it increased sales in the period by 1.5%, helping it increase share by 0.2 percentage points.
Nielsen’s figures for the four weeks ended November 7 also found that Sainsbury’s was the only one of the big four to increase year-on-year sales.
Sainsbury’s increased sales by 0.4% as Tesco and Morrisons recorded a 1.8% sales drop and Asda dived 4.7% during the period.
The major supermarkets experienced their biggest year-on-year fall in the value of sales for over a year with a 1.2% drop, according to Nielsen.
Nielsen head of retailer and business insights Mike Watkins said: “Heavy price-cutting to combat the discounters, coupled with deflation, is great news for consumers but increasingly problematic for the supermarkets, who are seeing less money going through the tills.
“The rise of the discounters seems to have hit Tesco, Asda and Morrisons the hardest. Their combined market share over the last year is down 2.1%, the exact figure the discounters’ has risen.
“The percentage of sales from items on promotion has remained at 32% for another month, suggesting retailers are still committed to driving incremental sales through promotional activity when the market is in decline”