The Rise of OSI Industries to the Pinnacle of Success
OSI Industries is one of the biggest food companies the world over. The company has a workforce of 20,000 in 65 facilities spread across seventeen countries. OSI Industries has come a long way from the early days to have a significant presence in the global economy. Similar to many success stories, this company traces its roots to immigrants’ pursuit of the American Dream. The enterprise was founded by Otto Kolschowsky, a German immigrant who settled in Chicago, at a time when the city was bursting with economic opportunities.
In 1914, Carl Sandburg described the Chicago as the City of the Big Shoulders as the influx of immigrants soldiered on. Kolschowsky opened a small meat market and butchery in 1909 and by the end of World War I, it transformed into a wholesale business. Partnerships and rebranding would soon follow.
In 1955, Ray Kroc opened the inaugural McDonalds eatery in Des Plaines as the franchising concept began to take root in the US. Before this venture, Kroc had partnered with Kolschowsky’s Otto & Sons to supply meat to his restaurant, and this quickly became their primary job. Otto & Sons struggled to keep up meat supply for this soon-to-be food industry behemoth.
Over two decades, Otto & Sons transitioned to OSI Industries to bolster its supply to the increasingly demanding McDonalds restaurants. Towards the end of the 1960s, a new technology– flash freezing- came into being and made it much easier and affordable to supply meat. This move catapulted OSI Industries to becoming a core supplier of McDonald’s thereby establishing itself as a stable supplier and in Chicago and all over the Midwest.
In the early 1980s, the thriving enterprise ventured into the international food market while still maintaining McDonald’s as a key client. Recently, OSI took the 58th spot on Forbes largest private conglomerates with sales revenue of $6.1 billion. In 2016, this holding company acquired Flagship Europe, a company that supplies frozen poultry, sauces, dressings, etc. to the UK market. OSI’s president and COO, David McDonald, praised this acquisition for broadening its market presence and expanding its product portfolio. OSI Group acquires Baho Food
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