Consumer >> CEO Interviews >> March 5, 2001

Monroe Milstein – Burlington Coat Factory Warehouse Corporation (bcf)

MONROE G. MILSTEIN became President and Chief Executive Officer of Burlington Coat Factory Warehouse Corp. in 1972 when the company opened its first operation in Burlington, New Jersey. When the company went public in 1983, Mr. Milstein was also named Chairman of the Board. Today, in 2001, the corporation has grown to more than 280 retail locations in 42 states. Burlington Coat Factory does over $2 billion in annual sales, and is continuing to grow at a rapid, but managed, pace. Mr. Milstein oversees the operations of all locations. As only a teenager, he graduated from New York University, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. Fresh out of college, he began his long career in merchandising when he started working along with his father in their thriving wholesale outerwear business. In the 1950s, he began his own small side'line retail operation. Soon enough, the retail operation grew to become his full-time interest and the wholesale business became secondary. Before opening Burlington Coat Factory in 1972, Mr. Milstein was also President of the Board of Trustees of the Nassau Library System, serving 64 libraries. He is a prime figure in a coalition he established in 1988 to encourage the United States government to enforce the 1907 antitrust laws for the free enterprise system and to reduce consumer prices. Along with other prominent American value retailers, Mr. Milstein was integral in passing the antitrust issue through the House of Representatives three times and once through the Senate. Profile
TWST: Could we start out with a quick update on Burlington Coat Factory:

where the company stands today in terms of numbers of stores and


Mr. Milstein: We have 291 stores in 42