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The Golub Corporation: Continuing Legacy

July 1, 2013

It takes a lot of effort to have a successful business. Some businesses are no longer owned by the original owners. Others have managed to pass on the business to the next generation. This is the case with Golub Corporation whose history goes all the way to Russia.

In 1900 a Russian immigrant by the name of Lewis Golub set foot on Ellis Island to start a new life. He eventually settled in Schenectady, New York. With virtually no capital his entrepreneurial zeal could not be stopped. Lewis first opened a lunch room, dairy store and later in 1922, a wholesale grocery. He died in 1930 after having merged his company Golub Wholesale Foods with another wholesaler. His sons Bernard (Ben) and William (Bill) were now part of this bigger company.

During the “Great Depression” period the brothers along with their partner opened a large self-service supermarket in Green Island, New York, a first in upstate New York. More than the usual grocery store it offered more produce like fresh meat, clothing and even appliances.  It was warmly accepted by the public and the brothers opened two more stores and named their new chain “Central Markets”.

Ben and Bill bought out their partner in 1943 and formed the Golub Corporation. Bringing new ideas the business grew and by the end of the 1950s they had 25 Central Market stores.  The next generation of the Golub family came into the picture with Ben’s son Lewis and Bill’s son Neil becoming more active in the 1970s. Their chain was one of the first in the nation to be “Open 24 Hours a Day” in 1972.

With a struggling economy the company opened an experimental store in Pittsburg, Massachusetts that same year. It focused on “high quality, low price” concept and the store was named “Price Chopper”. It was such a success that the entire Central Market chain was converted to Price Chopper Supermarkets by the autumn of 1973.

Today The Golub Corporation operates around 130 Price Chopper supermarkets in Vermont, northeastern Pennsylvania, upstate New York, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Massachusetts. The company had revenues of $3.4 billion in 2011 with 23,000 employees.

The legacy continues with a new generation of Golubs now running the company. The Golub family owns around 45 percent of the firm and employees own around 50 percent.

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