Kristoffer Tripplaar/Sipa USA via AP Images
There were a whopping 35,501 dollar store locations at the end of 2021.
Mary Gundel of Tampa, Florida, told me she was “really excited” to start her new job at a Dollar General in February 2019. She ended up loving the return to retail work, which offered unexpected challenges daily. She also loved feeling like she was helping her community, like when she brought food trucks to the parking lot so people could watch fireworks on the Fourth of July, or opened early in the first days of the pandemic to let seniors shop.
Still, “immediately there were red flags,” Gundel said. She received virtually no training before she was put in charge of a store, given only some online videos to watch for a week before being handed the keys. At the start of the pandemic, Dollar General added more employees to meet demand, but as precautions disappeared, so did the extra help. “Budgets became nonexistent,” she said, which meant she had to frequently schedule employees to work by themselves for long stretches.
Delivery trucks began showing up at unexpected times, leaving those overstretched employees to unload them and stock shelves while also maintaining the register. Refrigerated trucks arrived without outside vendors to unload them. Cranky customers began complaining that they couldn’t get through aisles crammed with goods no one had time to unpack. Gundel’s store was so understaffed that she would leave home at 5 or 6 in the morning and wouldn’t get back until after her three kids were in bed. Her rare days off were often interrupted because someone didn’t show up for a shift.
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“Over the past year, year and a half it seems as though our tasks and workloads just increased … to the point where it’s just unmanageable,” Gundel said. Higher-ups would tell her that it would get better soon, even though it never did. “I was tired of talking, I was tired of asking for help, I was tired of all of it.”
You may have seen the TikToks and read about what came next. On March 28, Gundel decided to post a series of videos explaining the situation, hoping that customers would understand that it was an issue of low budgets, not a lack of effort from employees. By 2 p.m. that day, the videos had gotten over a million views, she said. She couldn’t keep up with the comments, many of them from Dollar General workers attesting that the conditions were similar in their stores, too. She attached the hashtag #putinaticket, what workers say they are often told by Dollar General corporate when they complain.
Gundel’s boss called her the night of March 29, warning her that she should take down the videos. She refused. She was fired three days later. “That lit a fire under everybody’s butt,” she said.
This spark has hit particularly dry kindling. As a wave of unionization sweeps across retail, dollar store workers are organizing to fight back against some of the harshest conditions in the sector. Employees across the country work in dollar stores that are understaffed and sometimes unsafe. They have had to deal with rat infestations, broken air conditioners in the summer heat, and even workplace violence. The wages are also among the lowest in retail. According to the Economic Policy Institute and The Shift Project, 92 percent of Dollar General employees make less than $15 an hour.
As a wave of unionization sweeps across retail, dollar store workers are organizing to fight back against some of the harshest conditions in the sector.
Nearly all of the workers who spoke to the Prospect said they wanted a union in their store. “We actually need a union here,” said Kenya Slaughter, who works at a Dollar General in Alexandria, Louisiana. Organizing dollar stores, which had a whopping 35,501 physical storefronts at the end of 2021—more than Walmart, McDonald’s, and Starbucks combined—is a necessary component to unions gaining a foothold in U.S. retail.
But workers are afraid, and they have good reason.
“DOLLAR GENERAL, like many employers, has been aggressively anti-union,” said Kate Bronfenbrenner, director of labor education research at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. The company has already beaten back two unionization attempts. In 2017, workers at a store in Missouri voted to join the UFCW, only to wait nearly three years to have it certified due to legal challenges. The company closed the store three months later. Then in late 2021, six employees at a Connecticut store filed for an NLRB election but lost narrowly after the company spent thousands of dollars on so-called “union avoidance” consultants. Dollar General even has a section of its employee handbook devoted to “remaining union free.” Workers who try to unionize “are going to face a great deal of intimidation, coercion, threats,” Bronfenbrenner said. “It’s a battlefield out there.”
Dollar Tree and Family Dollar, which are owned by the same company, won’t likely be any easier. Richard Joseph, who works at Family Dollar in New Orleans, said that someone from human resources came to his store in April out of the blue and told employees why the company doesn’t believe in unions. But it had the opposite effect. “It makes me want to get a union so we could be treated fairly,” he said.
Joseph has worked for Family Dollar for nearly three years but still makes just $10.30 an hour without benefits. Because he only gets scheduled about 24 hours per week, he barely makes $400 every pay period. The company gave him an extra $2 an hour in hazard pay at the beginning of the pandemic, but took it away just a few months later. “I just want to keep fighting for what’s right,” Joseph told me. “It’s not just our store, it’s Dollar General, Dollar Tree, other dollar stores.”
The organizing at Joseph’s Family Dollar location is being aided by Step Up Louisiana, which has been talking to dollar store workers for four years. The work has recently “been picking up steam,” said Benjamin Zucker, the group’s co-director. After being called essential workers during the pandemic, only to face dangerous conditions and get paid too little to make ends meet, dollar store employees are more ready to speak out. “We’ve seen some results,” Zucker said, such as repaired air conditioners, new equipment, and small raises.
In an attempt to escalate, Step Up Louisiana recently showed up at a Dollar General shareholder meeting with partner organizations like United for Respect and Fight for $15. Three shareholders had given them proxies to enter the meeting and ask questions. Slaughter planned to tell executives that employees deserved safer working conditions, consistent air conditioning, and higher pay. “We’re not asking for much,” she said. But despite arriving at the building at 7:30, when workers tried to enter the meeting four minutes after it began, they were denied entry. “They didn’t want us to speak,” Slaughter said.
Slaughter started working at Dollar General four years ago after having her first child. Her favorite part of the job is the customers. “I have regulars, I have favorites,” she said. But it’s hard to tend to customers because she’s so frequently working alone in the store.
“Imagine your closet filled to the top with boxes of pasta, rice, sugar, canned goods,” she said. That’s what she has to unload, and then she has to put it away and break down the boxes, often with no help to cover the register. She’s had to resort to putting a sign on the door saying she was in the bathroom in order to take a break.
Then there’s safety. “There is theft, there is violence. You have to be on alert all the time at work,” she said. The week before we spoke, a customer had brandished a knife at her co-worker and store manager.
All of these issues, she argued, could be alleviated by simply having more than one person working in a store. This would allow workers to get more products on shelves, keep the stores clean, improve safety, and even combat shoplifting. “Which means more people shop more and more people buy more, it means they’re making more money,” she said.
Slaughter’s co-workers are afraid to speak out, though. “They need support and somebody who isn’t afraid, so boom here I am,” she said. “Somebody has to speak up, because things don’t have to be this way.”
ZUCKER SAID THAT there’s no immediate plan to form unions at stores. Instead, workers plan to “keep up the heat” over the summer. But he noted that “dollar store workers are taking inspiration from the bravery and success of the Starbucks and Amazon campaigns.”
Unionization never came up when Gundel was working at Dollar General. She knew talking about it would make her a target and maybe even get her fired. It wasn’t until after she was terminated and she started seeing the news about Amazon and Starbucks, and talking to organizers on those campaigns, that she realized it could make sense at Dollar General, too. “It really, truly seemed like this is what these employees need,” she said.
Lauren (a pseudonym because she fears losing her job for speaking out), a Dollar General employee from Missouri, reached out to Gundel for that kind of support. Five years ago, she quit the company after a shoplifter whom she had confronted returned to the store and beat her up. She tried to fend him off by grabbing a can of wasp spray but couldn’t get it open in time. In response, she said, the company hired a security guard for a week. “That was the extent of what they did,” she said.
Six months after quitting, Lauren came back to Dollar General. The workload was always heavy, but when the company started making workers unload refrigerated trucks it got worse. And now she’s working in a store without functioning air conditioning. After it went out, the company brought in portable units that she said do essentially nothing.
The day we spoke in early July, the store had reached 88 degrees by 2:00. The large chocolate bars in the candy aisle had slumped over, “like they’d given up on life,” Lauren said. A co-worker with severe asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease has been hospitalized twice in the last few months. Even without such severe reactions, the lack of air conditioning slows all the employees down.
“I used to really enjoy it,” she told me. “But there’s just not a whole lot anymore about Dollar General that is enjoyable.”
Lauren thinks a union would help. “If I had a union I bet I’d have air conditioning,” she said with a laugh. She added that employees would be more likely to show up for shifts and work harder if they were paid and treated better. In the meantime, she’s reached out to Gundel for help.
The challenge with unionizing, as Gundel sees it, is that store managers aren’t likely to be included in a unit, as they would probably be classified as supervisors under the National Labor Relations Act. Without the store managers, other workers will be too afraid to join. “They’re the ones that teams look up to,” she said.
Then, of course, there are the anti-union tactics that Dollar General has previously deployed, like shuttering the Missouri store in 2020. While it’s a violation of labor law to close a store in retaliation for union organizing, it’s hard for courts to enforce given the rights executives have to manage their companies, Bronfenbrenner said. One way around the danger, Gundel argued, is to file for NLRB elections “en masse,” perhaps flooding an entire district so that the company would have a harder time explaining why it shut down all its stores in an area.
In the meantime, Gundel has started her own organization, Dollar Store Workers United Association, to act in many of the ways that a union might. The organization has logged contacts from over 20,000 dollar store workers, and has had phone or video calls with four or five thousand of them. Her team has been calling regional and district managers on their behalf to raise issues, as well as filing complaints with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and local health and fire departments. “If nothing gets done about it, they basically just make it public knowledge,” she said, posting about the issue on LinkedIn and tagging the corporate entity and executives.
Dollar Store Workers United currently has 19 state representatives, all of them current or former Dollar General employees, who handle local employees’ concerns, and three board members who make big organizational decisions. Damien Zurawski is the chief field officer. He worked at Dollar General for most of last year and now works for Family Dollar. As soon as he saw Gundel’s TikToks, he reached out. Now he works with her “almost every day on my free time,” he said. “We’re doing the best we can for all of this to be volunteer and almost all of us working full-time jobs.”
Gundel expects to grow quickly, but she’s only just starting to figure out the financial aspect of it. Unions are funded by dues. Gundel recently got a business license, which should allow her to build a website that can take membership fees and outside donations. And Zurawski has been trying to convince workers who reach out with serious complaints to donate, even if it’s just a few dollars.
While Gundel is excited about her new organization, she admits that it’s difficult to balance with her family’s needs, earning some money by driving for Lyft and Uber, and trying to find a new job. “At the same time, I get that same exact feeling I did when working at Dollar General when I had to think on my feet and make quick decisions,” she said. “That’s why it has moved as quickly as it has.”
Bryce Covert is an independent journalist writing about the economy and a contributing writer at The Nation. Follow @brycecovert.
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Dollar General Corporation is an American chain of variety stores headquartered in Goodlettsville, Tennessee. As of April 11, 2022, Dollar General operates 18,216 stores in the continental United States.
: a store that sells inexpensive items priced usually at a dollar or a few dollars. Inflatable balloons, holiday decorations, toothbrushes and spices are some of the best deals you can buy at the dollar store.
Dollar General And Walmart
However, it's owned by private equity investors. These include Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR), Citigroup Private Equity, and GS Capital Partners. Fun Fact: the chain store started as a family-owned business.
The first Dollar General store opened in Springfield, Ky. on June 1, 1955, and the concept was simple – no item in the store would cost more than one dollar. The idea became a huge success and other stores owned by J.L. Turner and his son Cal Turner Sr.
Now, the company will expand its push to win wealthier customers in the suburbs using a new store model and name: Popshelf. Dollar General (DG) said Thursday it will open 1,000 Popshelf stores over the next four years.
No other retailer is opening more stores, faster, than Dollar General. Here are number of new locations announced in 2021. The key to its all-out expansion? A winning combination of cheap land, cheap construction and cheap labor.
Even though Dollar General has the word “dollar” in its name, everything in the store doesn't go for a buck; their merchandise is just low priced. Family Dollar is another chain that has the word “dollar” in its name but sells items for more than a buck.
Sometimes, products hit the dollar stores because of damage or lack of freshness. BUT, they are often just offered cheaper because they operate on slimmer margins than grocery stores. Many items were surplus or overstock items from a company.
By keeping stores small and employees at a minimum, dollar stores are able to convert a larger portion of sales into profit. According to 2012 figures, Dollar Tree captured 35 cents of profit for each dollar of revenue compared to 24.1 cents per dollar at Walmart. For third quarter 2021, figures remained comparable.
Founded by Joe Shoong (a Chinese-American businessperson and philanthropist) in 1903 and incorporated in 1921, the National Dollar Stores were the first retail chain on the West Coast and one of the largest Chinese American-owned retail chains in U.S. history.
I went to the World's Largest Dollar Tree ! Today I take you around the World's Largest Dollar Tree located in Burlington, North Carolina. Come Dollar Tree sho...
In this article, Doyle states that the research firm Telsey Advisory Group estimates that approximately 42 percent of the products that Dollar Tree sells are made in China.
Buck is an informal reference to $1 that may trace its origins to the American colonial period when deerskins (buckskins) were commonly traded for goods. The buck also refers to the U.S. dollar as a currency that can be used both domestically and internationally.
A spokesperson told the Wall Street Journal that the retailer has no plans to change its name. Dollar Tree is the last of the dollar stores to increase its prices above the namesake price point.
Macon Brock, Doug Perry, and K.R. Perry started K&K Toys in Norfolk, Virginia. This mall concept toy store grew to over 130 stores on the East coast. The K&K 5&10 store continued to exist and served as the foundation for what would become Dollar Tree.
Look for special markdowns on specific tagged items.
You'll see a yellow star, blue dot, etc. They use these symbols to do clearance markdowns. Look for clearance notes around the store that may have all of one symbol on 50% off clearance. 2.
(NYSE: DG) today announced that it has entered into an agreement to be acquired by affiliates of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P. ("KKR") in a transaction with a total value of approximately $7.3 billion, including approximately $380 million of net debt.
Dollar General sued over allegedly pricing items higher at the register than on shelves. COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTRF) — Dollar General is being sued for allegedly advertising goods for one price on shelves and charging a higher price at the register.
- Puerto Rico.
- District of Columbia.
- American Samoa.
- U.S. Virgin Islands.
|Dollar General Annual Long Term Debt (Millions of US $)|
Dollar General competitors include Costco, Target, Burlington Industries, Walmart and Dollar Tree.
That's right—despite the name, not all dollar stores sell every item in the store for just a dollar or less. Dollar Tree is an actual dollar store (for the most part). The company recently announced it will sell items in certain locations for more than its typical $1 price.
Yes, the new $1.25 price point is permanent. Dollar Tree started rolling out the $1.25 base price at their stores in late 2021, with all stores converted to the new price tag during the early part of 2022.
Endings in 99 increase sales of low value items, with the customer focusing on the lower digit on the left. Prices are a key product feature. They are immediately evident and extremely relevant when customers make their purchase decision.
- Knives. 1/12. Good chef's knives don't come cheap, so you might be tempted to pick up a blade or two at the dollar store. ...
- Plastic Kitchen Utensils. 2/12. ...
- Medicine and Vitamins. 3/12. ...
- Pet Food. 4/12. ...
- Makeup. 5/12. ...
- Sunscreen. 6/12. ...
- Toys. 7/12. ...
- Batteries. 8/12.
Once seen as dumping grounds for liquidated and off-brand merchandise, today's dollar stores often buy their inventory from major manufacturers such as Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Unilever, Coca-Cola, Energizer, Crayola and General Mills.
General Overview and Examples. If the base price of an item is 99.99 cents, then the purchase price, after rounding, will be $1.00 if no other purchases are made at the same time. Purchases of a single item will round up to the nearest penny.
Due to inflation, more people, including the wealthy, are turning to the stores for lower prices. Dollar Tree's CEO said a majority of its new customers have household incomes of at least $80,000.
Dollar stores may make up to $. 80 profit on items they sell, though the average is about $. 35 for each item. This means a dollar store would have to sell 200,000 items a year to make around $70,000 in profit.
How much does the Dollar Store Services franchise cost? Dollar Store Services has no franchise fee and royalty fee, with a total initial investment range of $76,900 to $366,900.
Dollar Tree, Inc. is an American multi-price-point chain of discount variety stores. Headquartered in Chesapeake, Virginia, it is a Fortune 500 company and operates 15,115 stores throughout the 48 contiguous U.S. states and Canada.
On July 28, 2014, Dollar Tree announced that it would buy Family Dollar for $8.5 billion. The sale delivered a windfall to the company's biggest shareholder Carl Icahn, who acquired his 9.4 percent stake in June 2014. On January 22, 2015, Family Dollar shareholders approved the Dollar Tree bid.
Dollar Tree Completes Acquisition of Family Dollar :: Dollar Tree, Inc.
Dollar Tree prices items at $1.25+, with the Dollar Tree Plus stores selling items for as high as $5.00 each. Family Dollar prices operate more like a traditional grocery store, with some items even going for over $20.
There are 8,241 Family Dollar retail stores in the United States as of November 17, 2022. The state with the most number of Family Dollar locations in the US is Texas, with 1,128 retail stores, which is about 14% of all Family Dollar retail stores in the US.
The number of stores in the major locations increased to 659 stores in California, 1,003 stores in Florida, 444 stores in Illinois, 584 stores in Michigan,574 stores in New York, 667 stores in North Carolina,690 stores in Ohio, 570 stores in Pennsylvania and 1,430 stores in Texas.
It's cheap! Super cheap. As a result, firms are able to cut their production costs dramatically and this in turn allows them to increase supply. With an increase in supply firms reduce their prices, meaning that consumers all over the world all benefit from the cheap production that China has to offer.
The majority of its suppliers are in the United States. However, the supply chain for Walmart stores is global, with suppliers in the United Kingdom, Canada, China, Mexico, Taiwan, Hong Kong, France, and other countries.
A sawbuck or sawhorse resembles "X," which is also the Roman numeral for "10." The first $10 bills issued by the U.S. government in the 1860s prominently featured the Roman numeral 10; the huge Xs looked like sawbucks' side.
Fin is for Five. Give your grandparents a great surprise by calling a $5 bill a “fin”. This was the dubbed nickname for the note in the 19th and early 20th century; a name that comes from the German/Yiddish language. In Yiddish, “fin” means “five”.
It has been suggested that the word sawbuck came to mean a 10-dollar bill because the X-shaped ends of a sawbuck look like the Roman numeral for 10. This explanation is problematic because earliest known use of sawbuck in print, from 1850, refers to a 10-dollar bill, not a sawhorse.
The company finally walked away from $1 because it was hurting business. It's not an entirely abrupt shift for Dollar Tree, however. In September, Dollar Tree said it planned to begin selling items at $1.25 and $1.50 at some stores for the first time.
Turns out, the UK version of the Dollar Tree is called, "Poundland," and you can't make this kind of stuff up.
Dollar Tree says it will shutter or change name of hundreds of Family Dollar stores. Discount retailer Dollar Tree will close up to 390 Family Dollar stores this year and plans to rebrand 200 more stores to the Dollar Tree name.
Greenback is a slang term for U.S. dollars. The first greenbacks were printed to finance the civil war and were called as such because their backs were printed in green.
The pyramid is part of the Great Seal of the United States. The Great Seal was first used on the reverse of the one-dollar Federal Reserve note in 1935. According to the State Department, which is the official keeper of the Seal, the pyramid symbolizes strength and durability.
The portrait of George Washington is displayed in the center of the obverse of the one-dollar bill, as it has been since the 1869 design. The oval containing George Washington is propped up by bunches of bay laurel leaves. To the left of George Washington is the Federal Reserve District seal.
Dollar General is not owned by China. However, the company buys a large portion of its merchandise from China. Its competitor Dollar Tree also buys a large portion of its goods from China. That's not surprising, as China is the largest supplier of low-cost goods that companies like Dollar General sell.
Warren Buffett Dollar General Corp.
Warren Buffett started to build up the position in Dollar General in Q2 2011 and continued to invest until Q3 2011. Since then they sold 4.5 Million shares. The investor completely sold their stake between Q1 2012 and Q3 2012.
Jeff Owen's promotion to CEO of Dollar General is effective as of Tuesday. Owen, who has been with the retailer for nearly 30 years and has served as the company's chief operating officer since August 2019, also joined the company's board as part of the transition.
Dollar General engages in the money transmission business as an authorized delegate of Western Union Financial Services, Inc.
There are 18,721 Dollar General retail stores in the United States as of November 20, 2022. The state with the most number of Dollar General locations in the US is Texas, with 1,750 retail stores, which is about 9% of all Dollar General retail stores in the US.
- General Electric (GE) ...
- AMC Theatres. ...
- Smithfield Foods. ...
- Legendary Entertainment Group. ...
- The Waldorf-Astoria. ...
- Strategic Hotels & Resorts. ...
- Riot Games. ...
- Sheraton Universal Hotel, Marriott Downtown Los Angeles.
The short answer is that Dollar General and Dollar Tree are separate companies. They're competitors, just like Walmart and Target, CVS and Walgreens, or AT&T and Verizon.
Interactive chart of historical net worth (market cap) for Dollar General (DG) over the last 10 years. How much a company is worth is typically represented by its market capitalization, or the current stock price multiplied by the number of shares outstanding. Dollar General net worth as of November 11, 2022 is $56.2B.
All of their units are company-owned and operated, meaning that profits stay within the company and do not go to outside operators. WE ESTIMATE THAT THE DOLLAR GENERAL FRANCHISE COST WOULD BE $1,000,000 TO $2,000,000+.
Since Dollar General prefers to invest in their business and not in real estate, the company relies on the developers to take the chosen sites through permitting, acquiring the property, and building Dollar General's prototype stores. Dollar General leases the properties from its developers.
|Name And Title||Total Compensation|
|Gary Philbin President and Chief Executive Officer||Total Compensation $7,734,904 View details|
|Kevin Wampler Chief Financial Officer||Total Compensation $3,391,845 View details|
|Robert H. Rudman Chief Global Products Officer||Total Compensation $3,316,477 View details|
Nov 1 (Reuters) - Dollar General Corp (DG. N), one of the largest U.S. discount retailers, was sued on Tuesday by Ohio, which accused the company of baiting shoppers with low prices on store shelves, only to then charge more at the register.
|CEO Name||CEO Pay||Median Employee Pay|
|Todd J. Vasos||CEO Pay $10,602,517||Median Employee Pay $13,773|
Dollar General sells products from America's most-trusted brands such as Clorox, Energizer, Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Coca-Cola, Mars, Unilever, Nestle, Kimberly-Clark, Kellogg's, General Mills, and PepsiCo.
Western Union requires receivers to provide photo ID as an added way of ensuring they are who they say they are – and although it's not 100% reliable, this simple procedure helps protect your money transfer. Send with confidence.
Note: You must be at least 18 years old with a valid, government-issued ID* to send or receive money with Western Union. In certain jurisdictions you also have an option to create a test question for your receiver to ensure the security of your transfer.