GfK GeoMarketing examines so-called location coupling among Germany's discount stores and supermarkets (DE)

A new study by GfK GeoMarketing examines current practices among Germany's grocery retailers. The agglomeration of businesses - so-called 'location coupling' - remains a very popular practice. However, a countertrend toward free-standing retailers is emerging, particularly in large cities.


Location trends: Aldi and Lidl.

According to a recent study by GfK GeoMarketing, there are 5.6% more discount stores located in the immediate proximity of a supermarket in 2010 compared to 2008. The study is based on data on more than 20,000 grocery store chains throughout Germany acquired and validated by GfK GeoMarketing through the company's retail and real estate consultancy projects. The results of the study can be obtained from GfK GeoMarketing in the form of a white paper titled 'Coupled locations in Germany's grocery trade: An ongoing trend with an emerging countertrend'.

On the whole, the trend of 'location coupling' among discount stores and full product-line merchants in the stationary grocery trade continues. These coupled locations consist of at least one discount store and a full product-line merchant as well as the occasional drug-, clothing- or shoe store.

Discount stores: Strong push toward coupling
Aldi has the most coupled locations of all discount store merchants in Germany. 879 Aldi sites are coupled with another merchant, which amounts to around 21% of all Aldi locations. By contrast, only around 10% of Lidl's locations (276) are coupled.

Coupled locations among both Aldi and Lidl are increasing more quickly than free-standing locations. Aldi's branch locations expanded by around 0.5% between 2008 and 2010, while the number of coupled locations grew by around 2.8% during this same period. Lidl experienced growth of approximately 4.3% during this time, although it has significantly fewer locations than Aldi. The number of Lidl's coupled locations grew by 14%.


Most common coupling partners of Aldi and Lidl.

Full product-line merchants seek out discount stores
Among the classic, full product-line merchants, the supermarket chains Edeka and Rewe are particularly fond of coupling locations. Both of these companies are characterized by small non-food sections and a

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