German supermarket giant Kaufland will exit Australia and has told its 200 employees their jobs will go.
Kaufland’s first stores in the country were to open in Adelaide and Melbourne but management has announced the business will instead concentrate on its European core markets.
The supermarket group had been bullish about competing with Aldi, Coles and Woolworths and had planned to open more than 20 stores.
Management and South Australian Premier Steven Marshall in September helped turned the first sod for the maiden Australian store at Prospect in Adelaide.
Acting CEO for Kaufland International Frank Schumann said: “This was not an easy decision for us. We always felt welcome in Australia.
“We would like to thank our employees and we apologise for the disruption this decision will cause.”
The Australian head office is in Melbourne, where most employees are based.
Kaufland also has offices in Adelaide, Brisbane and Sydney.
Representatives declined to comment further.