Stop Me If You’ve Seen This Before; Aldi’s and Kohl’s Superstore
Anyone who has grown up in West Michigan may be getting a sense of deja vu: A grocery store and a department store all in one store? Pardon me, while I type "M-e-i-j-e-r, or more recently Walmart or Target.
An article on Better Homes and Gardens website says the latest marriage of convenience is European grocery giant Aldi forming a partnership with Kohl's.
Last week, the first Aldi-Kohl’s adjacent store opened in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and 5-10 more adjacent locations are in the works. This is part of Aldi's initiative to expand to 2,500 stores by the end of 2020 - BHG.com story
Aldi is obviously trying to become a major player in the United States, maybe the biggest market on the planet. For Kohl's this could be a way of staying relevant in a retail market that is constantly shrinking with brick and mortar stores quickly fading away, evidenced most recently with the closing of Payless, the dire situation of Sears, and many more.
And the other question that is relevant; what about places like Kalamazoo. Aldi just built a new store on West Main. Kohl's is in the old Jewel/Harding's building. That's going to have to be one long bridge.
After this story was published, Kohl's send a statement to clarify what is in the works:
"As part of our rightsizing initiative, Kohl's will shrink the footprint of select Kohl's stores to be smaller. The remaining, underutilized square footage is then either leased or sold by Kohl's to a different entity. Kohl's will right-size approximately 5-10 stores for the pilot effort with Aldi. These will not be hybrid stores. Aldi will operate the adjacent store independently from Kohl's. A wall will completely separate the stores and there will be no shared space." - Kohl's Corporate Public Relations