What Is the History of BJ's Wholesale Club?

BJ's Wholesale Club is a membership-only warehouse club serving 15 states in over 200 locations on the East Coast and in Ohio. Founded in 1984 in Massachusetts by the discount department store Zayre, the company was named for Beverly Jean Weich, the daughter of the company's president at the time, Mervyn Weich. BJ's employs more than 25,000 full- and part-time employees.

As of 2011, BJ's is owned by Beacon Holding, Inc., an affiliate of Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. and by CVC Capital Partners. It is headquartered in Westborough, Massachusetts. As of October 2015 and since 2009, Laura Sen is BJ's chief executive officer.

BJ's offers membership to all businesses and people aged 18 and over. Memberships last one year from the date of purchase, and customers may renew their memberships at the register. It offers discounted merchandise including home goods, electronics, computers, health and beauty supplies, and cleaning products. BJ's also markets some of its own private-label products, Berkley-Jensen and Wellsley Farms. BJ's accepts all manufacturers' coupons and most forms of payment including cash, check, debit cards, all major credit cards and EBT.

The company operates 205 clubs in 15 states from Maine to Florida, and it employs more than 25,000 people. BJ's prides itself on offering leading brands and fresh foods at low prices. All businesses and consumers 18 and over are welcome to join BJ's membership.

There are three BJ's distribution centers, which are located in Uxbridge, Massachusetts; Burlington, New Jersey and Jacksonville, Florida.

Optical departments, gas stations, car rentals and vacation packages are additional services BJ's offers at some locations. In 2007, BJ's stopped providing pharmacological services.

In order to give back to communities, BJ's is involved in many charitable projects, which mostly focus on children and families. These include BJ's Adopt-A-School Program and BJ's Charitable Foundation.