Aldi’s UK boss has shrugged off the threat of new discount rival Jack’s and insisted it would be “a real struggle” for Tesco to replicate its model.

Britain’s biggest grocer launched the cut-price chain to much fanfare in Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, last month in a bid to go toe-to-toe with Aldi and Lidl.

And Tesco’s boss Dave Lewis insisted that Jack’s would be “the cheapest in town” as it threw down the gauntlet to its discount rivals.

But Aldi supremo Giles Hurley, who took the reins from Matthew Barnes in May, reiterated that the grocer would never be beaten on price and said: “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery – and in this case that is absolutely the truth.”

Speaking as Aldi’s UK and Ireland posted its first increase in profits for four years, Hurley said: “I think it’s important to stress that, here at Aldi, we have a really carefully honed business model. It’s taken us about 25 years to perfect it.

“The model is based on a really simple set of discounting principles, run by what I would call exceptional employees.

“For me, the business is not a distraction, it’s our core area of expertise. I’m very strongly of the belief that will be a real struggle for any more complex supermarket to successfully imitate our model, let alone replicate it.”

Asked about Lewis’ pledge to be “the cheapest in town”, Hurley added: “We welcome competition and we’re used to dealing with it – the UK is a very competitive market. But I would say it’s very much business as usual from our perspective.

“It’s important to stress that we will never be beaten on price. Customers have and always will pay the lowest prices at Aldi.

“It’s the very early days of Jack’s and we are checking our offering and their offering very carefully, and we’ll respond as required to maintain price leadership.”