German supermarket chain Kaufland confirmed its plan to open up to 20 stores in Australia in the coming year, marking its retail debut in the nation.
Kaufland, whose rivals include Aldi, said it had set in motion the paperwork for nine retail locations in the state of Victoria. Wit Victorian government approval, two stores will open just south of Melbourne, in Oakleigh South, and Coolaroo, north of the capital, as per local media reports.
The new locations will join the three stores previously announced in March, in Dandenong, Epping and Chirnside Park, as well as six more locations across both Victoria and South Australia, before its ventures into New South Wales, with Sydney stores expected to be announced shortly. It has also acquired three sites in South East Queensland, taking its Australian store count to close to 20 when all is finalised.
The world’s fourth largest retailer will open a new Australian headquarters and distribution centre, measuring 115,000 square metres, located in Mickleham, near Coolaroo.
According to Kaufland Australia managing director, Julia Kern, the half-a-billion-dollar investment into the state will also provide close to 2,500 new jobs.
“We are committed to long term, sustainable investment in Victoria and we are delighted to be exploring opportunities in both metropolitan and regional communities,” Kern told media.
”Our aim is to deliver our values of quality, simplicity, variety and price throughout Victoria and Australia.
“Australia is one of the fastest growing regions in the world, and we are excited to grow with it. Our aim is to raise the bar in retail excellence and provide an uncompromising quality food shop for our customers,” she added.
Founded in Germany in 1984, the hypermarket chain is part of the Schwarz Gruppe, which also owns Lidl and Handelshof. Unlike its German retail rival Aldi, Kaufland mimics the large store formats of U.S. heavyweights Costco and Walmart, with some 40,000 items in-store and brand names among its offerings.