George’s Inc. uses family formula to grow broiler business

This fourth-generation, family owned broiler company relies on a flat organizational structure to stay nimble and responsive as it grows.

The appearance of multinational, multi-protein companies in the U.S. broiler business led analysts in recent years to question whether midsize broiler producers can compete on the scale and breadth of distribution of the industry's biggest firms.

Tell that to George's Inc., which built a processing plant in Cassville, Mo., in 1989, acquired Rocco Foods in 2001, constructed new hatching and feed milling facilities in the mid-2000s, and purchased the processing complex in Harrisonburg, Va., in 2011. WATT PoultryUSA's August cover story tells how George's Inc. is now seeking new growth.
The fourth-generation, family owned and run broiler company - started in the 1920s by C.L. George - faces the classic business conundrum of how to grow in size to serve customers' needs while staying flexible and responsive.
"We feel that George's Inc.'s size is one of the biggest assets we have going for the company," co-CEO Carl George told WATT PoultryUSA. "It allows us to react to our customers' needs faster, which is a big advantage."
So, how does George's Inc. plan to grow to the next level to be able to better serve national accounts while staying nimble? Part of the strategy is a co-CEO management structure that allows twin brothers Carl and Charles George to divide up top management responsibilities and in so doing keep the organizational structure flat and responsive. Another part of the strategy involves the fact that George's Inc. is family owned and run, which allows a freedom in decision making and an acceptance of risk that might not be possible in some larger companies.
At 30, Carl and Charles are the same age their father, Gary George, was when he became CEO of George's Inc. As one of a handful of fourth-generation, family-run broiler integrators in existence, you might say the Georges are employing an old family formula for growing the business.

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