matthew barnes portrait one use

Like I say, Aldi is actually a British supermarket. My old German boss Norbert Podschlapp tells me it’s an acronym from Ancient London Discounter Innit.

As the boss of a British company, I get pretty free rein. I do all the talking in English and adding spaces between words, while Mülheim runs the sourcing and stores. And the distribution. Oh, and the finance, site acquisition and marketing. And strategy.

So I just spent a few intensive days putting Union flags and things on the website along with some quite funny puns like “Best in the British Aisles” just to make sure no one thinks we’re not British. As Podschlapp says, the media here love their sturm und drang, but their schadenfreude is completely ersatz in his view.

Some Neanderthal journalist asked the other day if being a British company meant, y’know, paying corporation tax at the going rate or publishing full accounts or disclosing data about ownership or sourcing policy or corporate governance. But that dummkopf hadn’t clocked that we were really there to talk about our exciting new comprehensive dotcom service.

Now, some would say that to do that properly you have to do things like invest in technology, infrastructure, people and stuff. Quatsch! We will offer the full gamut from wine to other wine, with the occasional Bolivian sandwich toaster to spice up the range. You can trust us. Not like that German company Volkswagen.

I also heard some besserwisser point out that profits were actually lower than last year. I was about to explain that this was just fiscal realpolitik, but we are under orders not to talk about things like that.