Bealls (Florida)

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Bealls, Inc.
Type Private
Industry Retail
Founded 1915
Headquarters Bradenton, Florida
Number of locations 500+
Products Clothing, footwear, bedding, furniture, jewelry, accessories, and housewares.
Website http://www.beallsflorida.com/

Bealls /ˈbɛlz/ is a United States retail corporation of over 500 stores founded in 1915 in Bradenton, Florida. Bealls consists of two chains, Bealls Department Stores and Bealls Outlet Stores, with Bealls Inc'. serving as the parent corporation. The group is not affiliated with Bealls Texas, although the two overlap in some markets. Where there is overlap, Bealls Florida operates as Burkes Outlet. The CEO of Bealls Inc. is Steve Knopik.[1] Bealls (FL) Department Stores, Inc. and Bealls Outlet Stores, Inc. are headed by Presidents Lorna Nagler and Dave Alves, respectively. All are headquartered in Bradenton.[2][3]

History[edit]

In 1915, 22-year-old Robert M. Beall Sr. opened a dry goods store in Bradenton, Florida. Because the store sold products for nothing more than one dollar he named his store The Dollar Limit. Following World War I inflation, Robert renamed his store The Five Dollar Limit. Business prospered during the Florida boom and he moved his store to new property a few blocks away in 1926. During the depression, Beall lost his business to the bank. He continued to manage it during the tough years of the 1930s, and by 1944 had saved enough to repurchase it.

In 1946, Robert was joined by his son Egbert and together they renamed the business Bealls Department Store. In 1956, the second Bealls Department store was opened in Bradenton's Westgate Shopping Center and the third Bealls Department store followed in 1961 at the Venice Shopping Center in Venice, Florida. Robert Beall ran the original downtown store until his death in 1979. Bealls continued to operate the downtown store until it was demolished in 1987. The proceeds from the sale of the property were used to establish a charitable foundation.[4]

A Burkes Outlet store in Picayune, MS

Bealls Outlet[edit]

In 1987, Bealls launched Bealls Outlet in response to the growth of off-price retail, and it caught on rapidly. In 1992, Bealls opened its first out-of-Florida Bealls Outlet in Arizona, and soon expanded to Georgia. Today Bealls Outlet has grown to over 430 stores in 16 states across the Sunbelt under the names of Bealls Outlet and Burkes Outlet. The Burkes Outlet name is used in Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, West Virginia, Virginia, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. Bealls and Burke's Outlet stores follow a deep discount every day low price policy.[5]

A Bealls Outlet store in Valdosta, Georgia

References[edit]

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