per STrib:

Nearly two years ago, Aldi said it would spend $34 million in Minnesota expanding and renovating stores. It planned to remodel 28 stores throughout the state and open two to four new stores per year as part of its $5 billion investment in U.S. expansion. Nationally, 1,300 stores will be remodeled and 900 added.

Not only will it meet its Minnesota goal, it's exceeding it. Twenty-five stores throughout the state have already been remodeled and two more will be by the end of the year including the Minneapolis Franklin Ave store (now closed for three months for expansion) and Little Canada. Thirteen more stores are set to be remodeled in 2020 and beyond to complete the refresh.

New stores opening in Minnesota this year include Minneapolis near Uptown, Richfield 494 and Lyndale, St Paul Phalen, St. Paul Sibley Plaza, Lakeville, Chaska, Chanhassen, Cloquet and one more in the north metro to be announced.

At this rate, Aldi will have 70 supermarkets in Minnesota by the end of 2019, just a handful shy of Cub, which has 77 stores in Minnesota. After its $5 billion investment nationally, Aldi will become the third largest in the country by store count, behind Walmart and Kroger.

Still, Aldi's market share in the Twin Cities (about 3%) is a fraction of Cub's (about 20%), according to Chain Store Guide's 2016 market share report. In the last three years, Supervalu (Cub's parent company, now owned by UNFI) has remodeled nearly 30 Cub stores across the state, although the stores remain open during the remodel.

Aldi's store size is also significantly smaller than Cub's. Its newest stores are about 10,000 to 12,000 square feet while new Cub and Hy-Vee stores range from 60,000 to 95,000. Phil Lempert, a supermarket analyst and founder of Supermarketguru.com, believes that a 12,000 square feet size fits many consumers just fine. "While there were some complaints about smaller selection, Aldi has altered to respond by increasing produce (including organics) and frozens," Lempert said in an email.

http://www.startribune.com/aldi-clos...ota/505429872/

Go Gophers!!