Aldi to sponsor British Olympics Team in possible £10 million deal

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The discount supermarket becomes the first “official” grocer of the British team in its history, following Sainsbury’s which was sponsor for the Paralympics in 2012z

It is the largest amount of money Aldi has ever spent on advertising and sponsorship and is a major u-turn on the company’s policy in its German homeland to have no advertising, claiming the marketing savings would be passed on to customers.

The decision comes a year after its discount rival Lidl launched its own multi-million pound advertising campaign in the UK to continue winning over middle class shoppers.

Industry sources pointed out to the Standard that the huge amount of money spent by Aldi shows the supermarket can no longer play on its “challenger” credentials.


One said: “Aldi has always managed to avoid any real scrutiny in the last few years because it was seen as just a small player in a big field.

“But spending £10 million to attach itself to the biggest sporting event in the world shows that that position is no longer tenable.

“If you look at the horsemeat scandal, Tesco received most of the flack but actually Aldi was equally implicated but managed to avoid most of the criticism.”

Aldi does not have any stores in Rio or Brazil, but does trade across most of Europe, Australia and the US, where it operates as Trader Joes.

The company, which was founded in Germany in 1946, launched in the UK in 1990 but it was not until the 2008 recession when it gained millions of customers from larger rivals Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons, as shoppers tightened their spending.

Around half of all families in the UK visited either an Aldi or Lidl in the last three months, according to Kantar Worldpanel, and the latest data showed Aldi grew sales faster than any other supermarket, with sales up 19.3% in the last three months.

The company has been trying to win over more middle class customers by introducing lobster, cured meats and even beluga caviar, although it was later revealed the fish eggs used were from a much cheaper Chinese fish.

Matthew Barnes, chief executive for Aldi UK and Ireland said: “We are truly honoured to be supporting the extraordinary Team GB athletes on the road to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.”

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March 19, 2015 |
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