A Retailing Pacesetter Pulls Up Lame

When Sol Price opened a 100,000-square-foot discount store outside San Diego in 1976, he launched a retailing revolution. Selling tires, office supplies, and five-pound tubs of peanut butter at rock-bottom prices, his 25-store Price Club chain was generating $2.6 billion a year in sales within 10 years and had spawned a flood of imitators. Indeed, it gave birth to an industry.

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