Here was my Tweet: “After 85+ years, George S. May Company is no longer in business. Perhaps the consulting company should have hired outside consultants.” I could have left it at that, but in the last 10 years of its existence, this once great company churned and burned so many consultants and small companies, either you or someone you know has been touched by it. It touched me. Now it is no more.
George S. May identified business as a set of algorithms and began his management consulting business in 1925 with a project for a company that would become Sunbeam, the blender maker. His new Chicago-based company did so well that it opened offices in New York and San Francisco. Despite the Great Depression, May Company history includes its posting revenue of $1 million in 1937, more than $15 million today.
May himself became best known for getting golf televised, among other things. Postwar America was good for his company, which advertised “Business Engineering” in leading business magazines and journals. He died in 1962 leaving the company stock to his family. In 1966 the May Company left downtown Chicago for the suburb of Park Ridge, where the 41,000-square-foot world headquarters is now closed and for sale, price $4 million. More about the “Ridge” in a moment.
In the ‘90s the May company hit the $100 million revenue mark and by 2000 it began operations in Mexico, under Donald J. Fletcher, its third president. In 2002, Israel Kushnir replaced Fletcher. However, according to one of the company's last press releases, “The company’s former president Israel Kushnir has left his post to pursue his own ventures, but the company is in the best of hands as Mrs. Kerry Sam Jacobs, George S May’s granddaughter is overseeing the transition to ensure prosperity as the company moves forward.”