OSI Group through the years

OSI Industries opened the door of its first family retail shop in Chicago. Since 1909 it has remained committed to customers and operations. The OSI Industries group has enjoyed tremendous success and is now regarded as a leading global food provider. Many world brands trust that OSI will provide cutting-edge food solutions that their customers are looking for. Post war economics saw the expansion of OSI to other suburbs of Chicago and across the United States. It also witnessed the coming together of two relatively small family businesses.

Ray Kroc had just opened the first McDonald’s restaurant in 1955 in Des Plaines, Illinois and was working at the time as the franchise agent of Richard and Maurice McDonald, a San Bernardino couple that had found a family restaurant in 1940. The Des Plaines McDonald restaurant was the first franchise, a model that was later used to expand its business in the United States.

Kroc had made a handshake agreement with Otto Kolschowsky’s son before opening the original McDonald’s franchise. Arthur and Harry had signed a deal to be the first suppliers of ground beef. As fate would have it, Kroc bought out McDonald’s and became the chief executive of the present day McDonald’s corporation. As the corporation took off so did the partnership with Otto & Sons by becoming the leading suppliers of the ever-increasing number of McDonald’s restaurants.

Otto & Sons quickly developed into a leading company and a consistent local source of food supplies in the Midwest. To fully recognize the core operations of their business, Otto & Sons re branded to OSI industries in 1975. This change marked a major shift of this company from a family owned and regional butcher shop to a technologically advanced global company operating as a manufacturer known as OSI Industries. Leadership was another aspect of the company that drastically changed after this transition. Members of the Kolschowsky family had solely run Otto & Sons as a family enterprise but the company transitioned into a large corporation with global operations. Sheldon Lavin was requested to come on board in 1975 as a partner as Arthur and Harry were nearing their retirement. Overall OSI Industries have had far reaching implications in the field.

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