Albert Heijn

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Albert Heijn
FoundedOostzaan, Netherlands (27 May 1887 (1887-05-27))
FounderAlbert Heijn (born 1865)
Number of locations
Netherlands 959[1][2]
Belgium 42[3]
Germany 11[4]
Area served
Key people
Wouter Kolk CEO
ProductsSupermarkets, Convenience stores, Small hypermarkets
OwnerAhold Delhaize
Number of employees
Former Albert Heijn logo (1965-2006)
A large Albert Heijn store in Alkmaar.
Albert Heijn To Go supermarket at the Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA station.
An delivery truck in Zaandam.
Albert Heijn store in Lier, Belgium.

Albert Heijn B.V. is the largest Dutch supermarket chain, founded in 1887 in Oostzaan, Netherlands. It is named after Albert Heijn, Sr., the founder of the first store in Oostzaan.

History and concept[edit]

Albert Heijn is the oldest organization owned and operated by the Dutch supermarket operator Ahold. The founder of the company (Albert Heijn) was born in 1865. In fact, the name "Ahold" is short for Albert Heijn Holding. In 1952, Albert Heijn initiated the self-service store. For the first time, the customers were not served one by one but could pick their products by themselves.[6]

The stores are full service markets (as opposed to discounters), known for their focus on quality stores and products. This focus on superior products is part of the reason that Albert Heijn is regarded as one of the more expensive supermarkets in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Curaçao. However, after a recent price war - initiated by Albert Heijn itself and involving nearly all Dutch supermarket chains from late 2003 all the way into 2006 - the prices are now back at a normal level again.[7]

Albert Heijn's market share is currently around 30%. The company's current logo consists of a stylized "ah" in white, surrounded by a blue background. In August 2018, Albert Heijn launched in-store counter for vegan food.[8][9]


Albert Heijn currently uses three distinct price levels. These include: the 'A-brands', a store brand, and a discount brand named AH Basic. The store offers products at a quality near to A-brand products, but at a lower price. AH Basic products mostly include commodities with a long shelf life. These products share the same simple packaging to uphold the image of a no-nonsense, low-price brand. AH Basic was introduced in 2013 to replace the Euroshopper brand which has since been phased out.


Prices can be further discounted by using a customer discount card (Dutch: "Bonuskaart"), which Albert Heijn introduced in 1997. This loyalty card can be obtained on credit card size or as a key chain. It features a bar code, linked to the customer's personal profile. When entering the bar code number on the Albert Heijn website, one receives offers based on the products one bought earlier using the card. After its introduction, several consumer organizations expressed their worries regarding people's privacy, as Albert Heijn clearly keeps track of consumers' buying behaviour. The Bonuskaart can also be used to obtain Air Miles.

Types of stores[edit]

  • 962 regular Albert Heijn stores, ranging in categories 1 (small) to 5 (very large); most open until 21.00, some until 22.00 or even 24.00.
  • AH To Go, 46 convenience stores located in high commuter traffic places such as railway stations offering ready-to-eat products; usually with extended shopping hours, closing between 22.00 and 01.00. There are also some AH To Go stores in Germany, e.g. in Cologne, Duisburg, and Essen.[10]
  • Albert Heijn XL, hypermarkets located in several Dutch cities.
  • (formerly, a web-based home delivery service offering all Albert Heijn products and those of other Ahold companies, such as Etos and Gall & Gall.

Key people[edit]

Albert Heijn (1865–1945) was the original founder of Albert Heijn stores, which is now the largest food retailer in the Netherlands. His grandson, Albert Heijn (1927–2011), was the founder of Ahold. Albert's brother, Gerrit Jan Heijn (1931–1987), also a top manager at Ahold, was kidnapped and murdered in 1987.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ winkels
  2. ^ Albert Heijn Zeelandia
  3. ^ winkels
  4. ^ Storefinder
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^
  7. ^ In Dutch: Elsevier - Welke supermarkten profiteerden van de prijzenoorlog?
  8. ^ Magazine, ESM. "Albert Heijn Launches Dedicated Vegan Food-To-Go Counter | ESM Magazine". ESM Magazine. Retrieved 2018-09-10.
  9. ^ "Cookies op |". (in Dutch). Retrieved 2018-09-10.
  10. ^ "storefinder". Archived from the original on 1 April 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2016.

External links[edit]