The Ross chain was purchased in 1982 by a group of investors, including Mervin
Morris (founder of Mervyn’s chain).
At that time, there were only six units in the San
Francisco Bay Area.
Also part of this investment group, were Stuart Moldaw and Don
Rowlett, who proved to be a very dynamic duo.
These two entrepreneurs were largely
responsible for Ross’s rapid expansion in the 1990’s.
Referred to as “retail veterans,”
both men had extensive experience in retail operation. One of the most important steps in
accelerating Ross’s expansion was the dedication towards attracting a broader customer
base and implementing a broader merchandise selection.
The two men shifted the chain’s
focus away from its original junior-oriented format and replaced it with an off-price
format stocking branded apparel for men, women, and children. The chain expanded
throughout the 1990’s, with many more stores opening.
Moldaw and Ferber then decided
to test-market a “Home Accents” department, featuring picture frames, china, ceramic
wear and crystal. Today, adding to the sales of clothing, frames, china, ceramic wear and
crystals, Ross offers a larger variety of products including shoes, purses, suitcases, socks,
chests, chairs, baskets, and toys.
The mission for Ross Stores’ is to offer competitive values by focusing on four
The first objective is to provide an appropriate level of brands and labels
at substantial discounts throughout their stores.
The next objective is to meet customer
needs on a regional basis (regional demands may differ in certain areas).
objective is to deliver an in-store shopping experience that meets the expectations of their
target market—the off-price customer (customers seeking lower priced clothing).
Ross Stores’ focuses on managing real estate growth to maintain dominance, or to
increase their competitiveness in key markets. One aspect of Operations Management