Russian immigrant Rose Blumkin began her spectacular version of the American Dream in 1937 when she opened Nebraska Furniture Mart in the basement of a small shop in downtown Omaha. Following her simple business tenet to "Sell cheap and tell the truth," Mrs B's dedication and savvy would spearhead an uninterrupted 70-year sales growth span for the "Mart."
Even a devastating Category 5 tornado in 1975 couldn't alter the course that Mrs B and her store were following. With millions of dollars in damage to the store, Mrs. B and her son, Louie B, simply regrouped to build a bigger and bolder Nebraska Furniture Mart.
Amidst constant modernization updates to the store and 77-acre campus, a massive electronics and appliance store was added in 1994. In 2003 Nebraska Furniture Mart added a state-of the art warehouse and distribution center and a new store in Kansas City, Kansas. The Kansas City store which encompasses more than 1,000,000 square feet of retail and distribution facilities is the first location outside of Omaha to offer its full compliment of products.
So impressed with the reputation and success of his hometown store, billionaire investor Warren Buffett used a simple handshake with Mrs. Blumkin to close a famous $60 million deal. Mr. Buffett would say of Mrs. B and the 1983 purchase of 90% of the business, "I would rather have her word than that of all the Big 8 auditors . . . it's like dealing with the Bank of England."
In 2000 a remodel of Nebraska Furniture Mart Omaha was completed. Also in 2000, the Homemakers store in Des Moines became a part of Nebraska Furniture Mart.
In 2003 Nebraska Furniture Mart opened a new state-of-the-art 651,000 square foot distribution center in Omaha, and a new Nebraska Furniture Mart retail store in Kansas City, Kansas.