MORE than 9,000 employees at Lidl are to get a pay rise worth £1,200 a year after the fast‑growing discounter supermarket group revealed today that it was hoisting its minimum wage for all staff from next month.
Lidl said it will pay a minimum of £8.20 an hour across Scotland, England and Wales, and £9.35 an hour in London from 1 October.
The group, which with its fellow German discounter Aldi has been squeezing sales and market share at the big four British food retailers, said the move would benefit 53 per cent of its 17,000‑strong British workforce.
Lidl currently pays £7.30 an hour outside London and £8.03 inside the English capital. Ronny Gottschlich, chief executive of the company, said: “We recognise that every employee forms an integral part of our team, and each individual’s contribution is valued. It’s therefore only right that we show our commitment, in the same way that the team commit to the business and our customers every day, by ensuring a wage that supports the cost of living.”
The group said the move would cost it £9 million, and that it would not be raising prices as a result of the wage increases.
The initiative sees Lidl increasing pay above the incoming national living wage, which George Osborne introduced in his summer Budget.
Instead the company is matching the rate expected to be set by the Living Wage Foundation, which is due to be announced in November.
Under Osborne’s national living wage, all British workers aged 25 and over will be paid £7.20 an hour from next April, rising to £9 from 2020.
Lidl and Aldi have been putting pressure on Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Asda in a price war over recent years.
Sainsbury’s hiked wages for its staff by 4 per cent from the end of August, setting a new hourly rate of £7.36, while Tesco pays its staff £7.39 an hour.
Lidl launched in Britain in 1994.
The business has grown into a 620‑store chain and had more than £4 billion in sales over the last financial year.