Rent-A-Center CEO Steps Down As Retailer Mulls Options

Rent-A-Center has named former President and COO Mitchell Fadel as CEO following the resignation of company founder Mark Speese. The executive changes occur as the rent-to-own retailer continues a “process to explore strategic and financial alternatives” as it considers “a full range of options focused on maximizing shareholder value.”

The retailer faces a somewhat uncertain future. For Q3, which ended Oct. 30, 2017, total revenues were $644 million, down from $693.9 million for the same period the previous year. Net losses were $12.6 million, compared to net earnings of $6.2 million in Q3 of 2016.

Additionally, this entire retail sector has been criticized by consumer advocates who maintain that the leases on furniture and other big-ticket items end up costing consumers more than traditional retail list prices.


Speese had stepped back into the CEO role in January 2017 on an interim basis after Robert Davis, who replaced then-retiring Speese in 2014, himself resigned. The company removed the interim tag from his title in April. Speese was a one-time employee who founded his own rent-to-own company in 1986, which ultimately acquired Rent-A-Center.

Fadel was most recently President of U.S. Pawn at EZCORP, a leading provider of pawn loans in the U.S. and Mexico. Prior to that he spent 30 years in various positions at Rent-A-Center.

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