Aldi has unveiled plans for a new £75 million distribution centre to service south-east England.
The new 88,000 sq metre facility in Bedford will be the discounter's twelfth in the UK, and will be sited in the Wixams area of the town. Aldi has submitted a planning application which, if approved, will also lead to the creation of 400 jobs.
The site will supply Aldi's stores across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire, while further distribution centres in Sheppey in Kent and Sawley in Derbyshire are also in development.
The move is the latest in a major investment drive by the German chain, which recently announced record sales of £8.7 billion, and follows a spend of £450m on new stores and distribution centre upgrades in the UK and Ireland last year. That has taken its total outlay to £2bn in the last five years.
Matthew Barnes, chief executive of Aldi UK and Ireland, said: “More than half of all UK households now regularly shop with us and many more prospective customers tell us they would switch supermarkets if there was an Aldi nearby. This gives us the confidence to continue investing in our operations and infrastructure.
“Our plans are more significant when viewed against the changes taking place in the UK grocery market. At a time when many of our competitors are scaling back, we continue to scale up our operations across the country.”