Ross is an American chain of "off-price" (i.e., deeply discounted) department stores headquartered in Dublin, California, officially operating under the brandname, Ross Dress for Less. It is the second-largest off-price retailer in the USA, behind TJX Companies.
As of August 2015, Ross operates 1,254 stores in 33 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and Guam, covering much of the country, but with no presence in New England, New York, northern New Jersey, Alaska, and areas of the Midwest.
Ross Department Store was first opened in San Bruno, California, in 1950 by Morris "Morrie" Ross. Morris would work 85 hours a week doing all of the buying and bookkeeping for his department store. In 1958 Ross sold his store to William Isaacson to become a residential and commercial real estate developer. Isaacson built the company to six stores, located in San Bruno, Pacifica, Novato, Vacaville, Redwood City, and Castro Valley. In 1982 a group of investors, including Mervin Morris, founder of the Mervyns chain of department stores, purchased the six Ross Department Stores in San Francisco, changed the format to off-price retail units, and within three years rapidly expanded the chain to 107 stores under Stuart Moldaw and Don Rowlett. By the end of 1995 the chain reached an annual sales of $1.4 billion with 292 stores in 18 states. By 2012 Ross reached $9.7 billion for the fiscal year with 1,091 stores in 33 states with an additional 108 for Dd's Discounts in 8 states. Ross moved its headquarters from Newark to Pleasanton, California, in the Tri-Valley area, in 2003.
Barbara Rentler took the place of CEO Michael Balmuth on June 1, 2014, thereby becoming the 25th woman chief executive officer of a Fortune 500 company, Ross Stores. Ross also moved its headquarters from Pleasanton to neighboring Dublin in 2014.