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BUSINESS BRIEFS

Lidl will enter Slovak market in September

LIDL, a German chain of discount stores, will open 14 new stores on September 9.

Lidl's arrival will offer customers a wide range of basic food products at a cheaper cost than its competitors, Ľubomír Drahovský, chief of the Terno agency, which deals with market research, told the news wire TASR.

"Lower prices are a result of setting out an unusual commercial approach, based on purchasing great amounts of products from Lidl's own suppliers for extremely low prices," he said.

"Other commercial rivals, such as Tesco or Carrefour, will have to cut prices by 5 to 10 percent," said Drahovský.

"However, this will only concern big self-service stores situated near Lidl. COOP Jednota stores, the market leader in non-urban areas, will not be threatened by Lidl's presence," Drahovský said.

New Lidl stores will be opened in Bánovce nad Bebravou, Bratislava-Petržalka, Dubnica nad Váhom, Hlohovec, Martin, Nitra, Partizánske, Prievidza, Ružomberok, Senica, Šamorín, Štúrovo, Žiar nad Hronom, and Žilina.

Drahovský predicted that despite Lidl's late-in-the-year market entry it would be ranked among the 20 top commercial companies of 2004 in Slovakia.

Lidl currently belongs among the 10 most successful companies in the German retail trade sector and operates all across Europe.

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