Discount grocer Aldi plans $14 million Cincinnati investment, 200 new hires

Grocery competition heats up
Posted at 12:11 PM, Aug 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-24 13:50:11-04

Discount grocery chain Aldi will invest $14 million to remodel 11 of its local stores by 2019, a move that further heats up the region’s battle for grocery customers.

Aldi is planning a one-day “hiring spree” Aug. 28 at all of its local stores. The goal is to fill more than 200 open positions, which pay between $11.50 and $12.75 per hour and come with health and dental coverage for employees who work more than 25 hours a week.

Here are the key details of the hiring event:

  • All Southwest Ohio stores and three stores in Kentucky (Florence, Independence and Newport) will hold hiring events Monday, Aug. 28 from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Job seekers must be at least 18 years old and available to work between 6 a.m. and 11 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Retail experience and high school diploma or GED are preferred. Drug screening and background checks are required.

The renovations are part of Aldi’s $1.6 billion investment to expand its number of U.S. stores to 2,000. The German-owned chain currently has 1,600 stores in 34 states, including 20 in Greater Cincinnati.

The remodeled stores will feature open ceilings, natural lighting and more room for produce, dairy and bakery goods.

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“We’ve expanded our fresh offerings while staying true to our everyday low prices,” said Sarah Brown, Springfield division vice president for Aldi, in a press release. “Customers will recognize our easy-to-shop environment featuring a new modern design and more room for their favorite products.”

Aldi’s announcement offered no details on new store plans for Southwest Ohio, where Kroger outnumbers its discount rival by a margin of more than four to one. Aldi has not responded to WCPO questions about home delivery. The company partnered with Instacart this month to deliver groceries to its customers in Atlanta, Dallas and Los Angeles. That service is not yet available in Cincinnati.

Aldi’s increased investment comes as its German-owned rival, Lidl, scouts for Cincinnati locations and Kroger, Wal-Mart and Meijer are expanding their online-ordering and home-delivery options. Smaller chains are feeling the pressure, as evidenced by this week’s announced closure of a Fresh Thyme store in Anderson and the sale in February of the family-owned Remke Markets to Findlay, Ohio-based Generative Growth LLC.