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Worried about Walmart? There's Already a German Version in Queens

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Aldi carts via <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/maha-online/118434564/sizes/o/">maha-online</a>/Flickr
Aldi carts via maha-online/Flickr

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It's starting to look like Walmart really will open in NYC. Rumor has it that developer Related Companies will bring in the big-box discounter when it opens its Gateway II project in East New York. And while Related hasn't officially bought the 25 acres it needs for the project, the sale is "all but a done deal," according to the New York Daily News.

Ironically, though, while city leaders and preservationists fret over the arrival of Walmart, the German version, Aldi, has quietly invaded Queens. If you don't know much about the discount supermarket, German paper Spiegel's recent article on the brand is a good place to start. Three useful pieces of information: 1) Aldi's products tend to be 45% cheaper than they would be elsewhere—at least, according to its ads. 2) Like Walmart, it is not unionized. 3) It's related to Trader Joe's, sort of. Spiegel explains, "In Germany, operations of the discount grocery empire are divided into two companies run separately and created by its reclusive founders, brothers Karl and Theo Albrecht." Trader Joe's is run by Aldi Nord (north), while the Aldi in Queens is run by Aldi Süd (south.)
· NYC's Price For A Walmart: $35 Million [NYDN]
· As Americans Save, German Discount Grocer Moves In [Spiefgel]

Aldi

61-11 Junction Boulevard Rego Park, NY 11374