Heidi Klum the latest Lidl surprise and that’s bad news for rivals

The German supermodel could draw in a host of new customers if her forthcoming range for the discounter passes muster with fashionistas 

James Moore
Chief Business Commentator
Tuesday 06 June 2017 09:14
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Will something like this be a Klum surprise on Lidl’s middle aisle?
Will something like this be a Klum surprise on Lidl’s middle aisle?

Finding a way down a Lidl catwalk stuffed with garden games, kids’ puzzles, Pritt sticks and shower curtains wouldn’t appear to come naturally to the likes of Heidi Klum.

But that’s where you’ll soon find the German supermodel’s name: she’s been hired to add a bit of sparkle to the discounter’s aisle of mad decisions, where clothes sometimes appear alongside the weird and wonderful stuff the company likes to call “Lidl Surprises”.

The biggest surprise sometimes being when you find what you’ve bought lurking in the cupboard under the stairs and are left thinking: “Why?”

Why? is what people might very well have said upon seeing some of Ms Klum’s more outlandish costumes. The announcement of her deal with Lidl delighted picture editors, giving them the chance to trot out snaps of her dressed in some of them.

She’s been featured as a pharaoh, a butterfly, an angel, Jessica Rabbit, and (of course) as herself wearing not very much at all.

The goods on Lidl’s middle aisle will likely be a little more conservative. What we’re talking about here is affordable “high end fashion for everyone”. For as long as stocks last.

Joking aside, it could prove to be a very smart move on both sides if Ms Klum’s designs pass muster (and previous creations have appeared under the Victoria’s Secret, Birkenstock and Jordache jeans brands).

Lidl often sells clothes. In fact, they form part of this week’s offers. Which are, well, a bit meh.

They’re striking only for their price.

That’s handy at a time when other clothes retailers are busy trying to force through increases to what people pay for their basics (I’m looking at you Next).

But unless you’re desperately in need of a striped top, you’re not exactly going to hightail it down to your local Lidl if you’re not already a regular. What’s on offer is sufficiently dowdy that you wouldn’t be all that surprised to find it in M&S at a slightly higher price.

Ms Klum promises to add a bit of sparkle to future surprises, particularly if prices are equally eye-catching. This being Lidl, they probably will be.

The Klum name alone may draw in people who wouldn’t otherwise shop there, and who might find themselves pleasantly surprised with what else they find on offer.

Lidl, and its shadow sibling Aldi have been attempting to draw in a wider range of shoppers, with some success. What’s impressive is their willingness to try out new ideas, Aldi’s wine shops being another of those. And it’s not just their prices that have made life very difficult for rivals.

If the Klum designs for Lidl find favour with fashionistas, they’ll only add to the challenge rivals face in competing with it. This deal isn’t such a nice surprise for them.

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