Lidl opens first distribution centre in Latvia

Date : 25 January 2021

Maxime Delacour

Senior Retail Analyst

This month, Lidl opened its first distribution centre in Latvia, in Riga. When the first stores will open later this year it will mark the 30th market entry for the discounter globally. This means Lidl will be one country away from operating across all EU countries.

Disruption ahead for Latvia and Estonia grocery retailers

We expect Lidl to launch in Latvia with a network of 10 to 15 stores in nine of the major cities and similar numbers when it will enter Estonia potentially later this year. With no discounters operating in neither Latvia nor Estonia, it is expected Lidl could have the same disruptive role as in Lithuania.

As a reminder, Lidl entered Lithuania in 2016 with 15 stores and now operates 54 stores and reached a market share of more than 10% in 2020 according to our estimates. The qualitative private label brands and the support to local suppliers were amongst the main reasons of this success. We expect the discounter to use the same strategy in Latvia and Estonia and challenge the existing retailers Rimi and Maxima.

Modern and sustainable building

The new distribution centre (DC) is one of the most modern and energy-efficient building of its kind in the Baltics according to Lidl. Over €55m was invested in the construction of the 51,000 m2 facility that will supply stores across Latvia and Estonia. The first stores should open in Latvia very soon as the recruitment of store employees has been ongoing since fall 2020.

Source: Lidl Latvia (Maciej Urbanski and Jakob Josefsson, respectively Director of sales and logistics and Chairman of Lidl Latvija and Lidl Eesti)

At the opening of the logistics centre Jakob Josefsson, Chairman of the Board of Lidl Latvija and Lidl Eesti said: “Commencing operations at this Logistics center in Riga is a very important milestone towards the future Lidl store opening because it is a starting point from where the goods will be delivered daily to Lidl stores in Latvia and later in Estonia to guarantee high-quality products for the best price to our customers”

Sustainable materials were used to reduce the impact on the environment of the DC that is also powered by electricity from 100% reusable energy sources., The building has been awarded an EDGE certificate which certifies at least 24% energy and 27% water savings.

Source: Lidl Latvia

Some of the building key features:

  • Six different temperature zones to handle the entire assortment
  • 30 different types of waste will be recycled on-site,
  • Recycled heat energy obtained as a by-product from the freezer rooms

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