Dick McAdams was 23 when he founded his first company, McAdams Carpets in Montgomery, Ala. At one time he was listed in the book of world records for owning a retail store that did the most business per square foot in the world. By 1975, McAdams Carpets had become the largest flooring dealer in Alabama, a distinction his store would have for 20 years when it discontinued residential sales. In 1988, McAdams founded Georgia Carpet Outlets (GCO), a niche concept that was new to the industry: cash-and-carry. Within six years, GCO had grown to 64 company-owned and franchised stores. At the time of his retirement, the chain had more than 100 stores.