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Publix - The history
George Jenkins established his first store with the name Publix Food store on Sept. 5, 1930, in Winter Haven. He opened a second location across town in 1935. On Nov. 8, 1940, George shut down the first two stores to open his dream store, which was the first Publix Supermarket. A "food palace" of marble, glass, and stucco, this store included innovations such as fluorescent lighting, electric eye doors air conditioning, and terrazzo floors. He acquired a warehouse and 19 All American stores from the Lakeland Grocery Company in 1945. He started replacing these small stores with bigger supermarkets. He continued his never-ending expansion, bringing the Publix standard of friendly service, clean stores, and quality merchandise to customers throughout Florida.
As Publix supermarkets continued to spring up across the Southeast, improving to include delis, pharmacies, and even cooking schools, the company never veered from Mr. George's original philosophy of treating employees and customers like family. Our thousands of meat cutters, cashiers, baggers, and bakers are the company's highest collective shareholders—all trained to put their customers first. As a result, Publix has been hailed as the No. 1 supermarket for customer satisfaction, one of the Best Companies to Work For," and as an inspiration for its sustainability efforts and community involvement.
Today, Publix has expanded from a single shop into a sprawling collection of not less than 1,100 supermarkets that brought in $34 billion in 2016.