ALL-DI news that’s fit to print — It’s like a soap opera over there!
Here’s just a little fun ALDI-related reading for your Easter Monday, because these news articles provide such deliciously dishy ALDI gossip for you guys today. But before we start, here’s a little backstory for U.S. readers. This will help provide a little clarity into what’s going on, and clear up a common misconception.
So, you know how people always think that Trader Joe’s owns ALDI?
I hear people all the time saying that ALDI is just Trader Joe’s under a different name, but here’s the real deal. ALDI and Trader Joe’s do share a common family heritage: ALDI was founded by Anna Albrecht way back in 1913 in the German town of Essen, and then expanded rapidly in post-war Germany when sons Karl and Theo began running the business.
Way back in 1960, however, Karl and Theo had a falling out over whether to sell cigarettes. They split the original German ALDI operation into two independent companies: Theo and his family took Aldi Nord (which operates in northern Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, France, and Spain), and Karl and his family took Aldi Süd (which operates in southern Germany, the UK, Australia, and Ireland). In the U.S., Trader Joe’s is owned and operated by Aldi Nord, while ALDI stores are owned and operated by Aldi Süd. The U.S. chains operate completely independently of one another. So, although they do share a common heritage, ALDI U.S. is not (by any stretch of the imagination!) just an off-label Trader Joe’s.
So, you know how ALDI is renowned as a frugal grocery chain?
Karl and Theo grew up in poverty, which inspired both their way of life and their frugal grocery chains. Well, Theo died back in 2010, and his widow Cilly passed away in late 2018. When her will was recently made public, she used it to attack one of Theo’s sons’ children and their mother for their anti-ALDI extravagance, accusing them of siphoning off millions of dollars from the company to finance their own lifestyles.
She further accused them of working against the business interests of ALDI Nord, and used her will to declare that her daughter-in-law and grandchildren would no longer have a role in the company and its business decisions.
“With this document, I undertake to ensure the preservation of the philosophy of our family, which is to serve the consortium Aldi Nord and to foster this, at the same time as setting aside self-interests and practicing a modest and abstemious way of life.”
Ouch, right? Read more of the juicy details here:
- How “Beyond the Grave” Cash Row Could Seal ALDI Reunification
- Late “Grand Dame” of ALDI Clan Sparks Family Feud with Her Will
The accused family, of course, denies any wrongdoing.
Now they’re talking ALDI reunification?!
Cilly’s will and the ongoing feud is causing analysts to worry about the future of the company, and some are even positing that a reunification of ALDI Nord and the more successful ALDI Süd could be possible. So, there’s your fun ALDI gossip reading for the day — take a look at the articles above for much more on this story!