Lidl tops Waitrose to become UK's seventh biggest grocer

A Lidl supermarket signImage source, AFP

Lidl has beaten Waitrose to become the UK's seventh largest supermarket chain, according to latest grocery market share figures.

The German discount food retailer has increased its market share to 5.2%, up by 0.7% year-on-year, Kantar Worldpanel reports.

Families are driving its sales as they tend to buy more items in one supermarket visit, Kantar said.

With 5.1% market share, Waitrose has been pushed into eighth place.

"Ten million households visited [Lidl's] expanding network of stores during the past 12 weeks, with alcohol and fresh produce performing particularly well as the retailer increased sales by 18.9% overall," said Fraser McKevitt, head of retailer and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel.

"Lidl is growing sales 40% faster with families than with households without children."

The biggest supermarket chains in the UK, by market share are:

  • Tesco (27.8%)
  • Sainsbury's (15.8%)
  • Asda (15.3%)
  • Morrisons (10.4%)
  • Aldi (7%)
  • Co-op (6.3%)
  • Lidl (5.2%)
  • Waitrose (5.1%)
  • Iceland (2.1%)
  • Ocado (1.4%)

Since the financial crisis in 2008, the four biggest grocers Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda and Morrisons have faced increasing pressure from luxury supermarket brands like Waitrose, as well as German discount chains like Aldi and Lidl.

Grocery market share figures from March 2017 onwards show that UK supermarkets are now experiencing their best sales growth in five years.

"All four of Britain's biggest grocers managed to grow sales for the fifth consecutive period, a run of collective success not seen since 2013," said Mr McKevitt.

"However, this welcome period of sustained growth hasn't been enough to entirely offset pressure from the discounters: the big four now account for just 69.3% of the UK grocery market - down from 76.3% five years ago - and that looks set to fall further in the coming months."