Sol and Robert Price raised $2.5 million from friends and family to open Price Club on July 12th, 1976 in San Diego, California. It was the first warehouse club only for business shoppers in the United States. The first Costco was opened in Seattle in 1983. Price Club and Costco merged in 1993 to become Price/Costco and the name was changed to Costco Companies, Inc. in 1999.
Costco is one of my favorite companies as they are, in my opinion, a model of a customer-centric company that cares about its shoppers. They also have a unique business model as they need to make a 15% profit minimum on ALL goods and will change vendors if/when net profit falls below that mark.
Costco is a wholesaler that specializes in selling bulk items with competitive pricing. The reason why their pricing is so competitive is that they go directly to the producers, buy in bulk, and pass on those savings to their loyal members. Take wine for example. Costco will go directly to the vineyards and negotiate their agreement, which is why their wine is so well-priced.
\What many people do not know is some of their prices have a special code, based on the last 2 digits of the price. If you learn to decode the Costco price tag, you can save even more money!
When I decided to write this article, I had to call my Uncle Walter Meade, who is the family expert on Costco, and he did not disappoint. Costco is grouped with Sam’s Club and BJ’s in the top tier of member-only wholesale shopping clubs. Walter went to the first Price Club in New York State, which was in Holbrook, Long Island at the time, and he now lives 5 minutes from a Costco in Tampa, Florida, which he uses as his supermarket.
]Uncle Walters’ Lucky 7 Top Costco Tips:
Costco is a forward-thinking company and in 2020 it purchased a logistics company called Innovel. Innovel helps streamline the “final mile” for bulky items like televisions, appliances, furniture, and fitness equipment to get to your home. Innovel serves major retailers and the military with more than 1100 trucks on the road daily and more than 4 million deliveries per year!
For questions, comments, or topics you are interested in learning about feel free to ask me at Rob@InsuranceDoctor.us.