Historical Highlights


  • In August 1982, six junior department stores in the San Francisco Bay Area were acquired and converted to the Ross Dress For Less off-price format.
  • Ross Stores went public with its IPO in August 1985, trading on Nasdaq under the symbol “ROST.”
  • The Company expanded rapidly and ended fiscal 1986 with total sales of $534 million and 121 stores in 16 states.


  • Expansion slowed to refocus on investing in management and infrastructure to more effectively manage growth.
  • A total of 35 net new stores opened, all in existing markets.
  • The Company reincorporated in Delaware in June 1989.
  • Ross operated 156 stores in 15 states at the end of 1989 with annual sales of $741 million.


  • The late 1980’s strategy of differentiation caused the Company to stray too far from its core off-price roots, resulting in declines in same store sales and earnings during fiscal 1990.
  • An in-depth analysis resulted in development of the proven off-price business strategies that the Company continues to implement today.
  • The Company ended 1990 with annual sales of $804 million and 185 stores in 18 states.


  • Strategic investments were made in the buying organization to strengthen the Company’s ability to acquire the best bargains possible, with the merchandise staff growing more than four-fold during the 1990’s.
  • The Company’s top priority was on delivering compelling values on a wide assortment of fashions for its customers by increasing the amount of close-out purchases of nationally-recognized name brands.
  • Product offerings expanded to include Home Accents, Bed & Bath and other non-apparel categories.
  • Store growth was focused in existing markets to enhance competitive positioning and increase operating margins.
  • By year-end 1995, annual sales totaled $1.4 billion with 292 stores in 18 states.


  • Consistent execution of core strategies contributed to significant growth in sales productivity and operating profits.
  • Annual sales grew to $2.7 billion by the end of fiscal 2000 with 409 stores in 17 states and Guam.


  • Store growth accelerated with entry into new markets in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic.
  • Broad-based infrastructure investments were made to support this growth, including four new / expanded distribution centers, new warehouse and transportation management systems, and new POS, Financial, HR and Core Merchandising systems.
  • The Company launched dd’s DISCOUNTS in 2004, which targeted customers from households with more moderate income compared to Ross customers.
  • Annual sales were $7.9 billion by 2010 fiscal year end, with 988 Ross Dress for Less stores in 27 states and Guam, and 67 dd's DISCOUNTS in six states.


  • Ross Dress for Less entered the Midwest region in 2011, its first major new market in almost a decade, with the initial opening of 12 stores in the greater Chicago area. By the end of 2017, Ross operated a total of 149 locations in the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, North and South Dakota, and Wisconsin.
  • Based on an in-depth analysis of domestic store potential, Ross Dress for Less raised its target for long-term store potential from 1,500 to 2,000 locations.
  • To support future store expansion, the Company made a number of infrastructure investments in 2014 and 2015, including the acquisition of its New York Buying Office property and the opening of two new distribution centers in South Carolina and California.


  • Ross Dress for Less continued its expansion in both existing and newer markets.  By the end of 2017, Ross operated a total of 149 locations in newer markets including the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, North and South Dakota, and Wisconsin.
  • In 2018, based on internal research, the Company increased its long-term store target to 2,400 locations across the country for Ross Dress for Less and that dd’s DISCOUNTS can become a chain of approximately 600 stores.
  • In 2020, the Company’s operations and financial results reflected the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Sales declined to $12.5 billion as operations were closed for a portion of the year, consumers were hesitant to shop brick-and-mortar stores during the health crisis, and stores were subject to mandated occupancy and operating hour restrictions once stores reopened. Store growth moderated to 66 new openings given the uncertainty caused by COVID. That said, the Company exited the year in a solid financial foundation with $4.8 billion in cash.   


  • The Company improved sales to $18.9 billion in fiscal 2021 while continuing to navigate through the external challenges caused by the ongoing COVID pandemic and its effect on the macro-economic and retail environment. Given consumers’ increased focus on value and convenience, favorable trends in both new and fill-in markets, as well as ongoing retail bankruptcies and store closures, the Company updated its long-term store target to 2,900 Ross Dress for Less and 700 dd’s DISCOUNTS.
  • In 2022, the Company celebrated a significant milestone – the launch of the off-price business four decades ago.
  • Annual sales in fiscal 2023 reached a record $20.4 billion as the Company rebounded from a challenging year in 2022, when significant inflationary pressures had a meaningful impact on the low-to-moderate income customer. In 2023, the Company opened its first Ross Dress for Less stores in New York, Michigan, and Minnesota and ended the year with 1,764 Ross Dress for Less stores in 43 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam, and 345 dd’s DISCOUNTS locations in 22 states.