99 Cents Only store in Murrieta, Calif. by Thankstelfair (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The man who founded the 99 Cents Only Stores chain that offers everything from apples to school supplies for under a buck has died. Dave Gold was 80.
His son, Jeff Gold, told the Los Angeles Times that Gold died Monday of an apparent heart attack at his Los Angeles home.
Gold was 50 when he opened the first store in 1982. He told the Times in 2003 that while working at a liquor store, he discovered that items he discounted to, say, 98 cents or $1.02 never sold out but a 99-cent label was magic.
His stores eventually spread to middle-class and even upscale neighborhoods in California, Arizona, Nevada and Texas.
Gold became a multimillionaire but lived modestly.
The company was sold in 2011 for about $1.6 billion.