C-SUITE

Furniture retailer taps former Barnes & Noble head as CEO

BY Marianne Wilson

Art Van Furniture has appointed a veteran retailer as its next chief executive.

The Midwest furniture and mattress retailer said that Ronald Boire will join the company as its new president and CEO, effective April 30, 2018. He will succeed Kim Yost, who recently announced his retirement after nine years with the chain.

Boire comes to Art Van having previously served in senior executive positions, including president and CEO roles, at a wide variety of retail and consumer electronic companies, including Barnes & Noble (where he served as CEO from September 2015 to August 2016), Sony Electronics, Best Buy, Toys “R” Us, Brookstone, and Sears Canada.

Prior to joining Art Van, he was a principal at The Upland Group, an advisory firm specializing in the development, leadership, and execution of transformational strategies for retail and consumer product companies.

“We thank Kim [Yost] for the leadership and guidance he has provided to the company through this year of transition, and wish him well in his retirement,” said Jeff Swenson, managing director of Thomas H. Lee Partners, which acquired Art Van Furniture in 2017 for an estimated $550 million. “Looking ahead, we are thrilled with Ron’s decision to join Art Van. His deep expertise in retail management and extensive experience leading transformational and omnichannel strategies focused on delivering best-in-class customer experiences – both online and in stores – will be incredibly valuable as we build on a long and storied history of growth for the Art Van, Levin, and Wolf brands.”

Art Van Furniture operates 185 stores in nine under a variety of banners, including Art Van Furniture, Art Van PureSleep, Art Van Flooring, Scott Shuptrine Interiors, Levin Furniture, Wolf Furniture and Gardiner Wolf Furniture.

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