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Best Buy vet to become Tile Shop CEO


Specialty retailer Tile Shop announced a senior leadership transition involving long time CEO Robert Rucker and current COO Chris Homeister.

The company said Homeister, a former Best Buy merchant who joined Minneapolis-based Tile Shop a year ago, would be elevated to the role of CEO effective Jan. 1. He replaces current CEO Robert Rucker who founded the company 29 years ago. Rucker will remain with the company on a full time basis until Aug. 1, 2015 as an advisor and board member.

The announcement was made in conjunction with the release of third quarter results that saw sales for the period ended Sept. 30 increase 10.6% to $62.8 million. Same store sales advanced just 0.6%.

"I am very proud of the business that we have built over the past 29 years where we currently have 105 stores in 30 states and feel that we are just getting started on our path to being the leading national specialty tile retailer," Rucker said. "Our management team has never been stronger, and I am absolutely confident that Chris is more than ready to lead the company as we move forward."

Homeister joined Tile Shop roughly a year ago as COO, a newly created role to oversee supply chain, retail operations and merchandising. He previously served as the general manager and SVP of Best Buy’s entertainment business group. Prior to Best Buy, Homeister was a vp at computer maker Gateway.

"I am extremely honored by the opportunity to lead the company as CEO. Bob has built a tremendous business and established a great foundation for all of us to build upon,” Homeister said. “While there have been many accomplishments for the business in the past year, for a variety of reasons we have fallen short of our own and external expectations in 2014. My focus as we move forward will be on returning the Company to higher levels of growth and profitability. The proven strength of The Tile Shop model with customers has been clear for nearly 30 years, but we have many opportunities for improvement as we scale the business nationally."

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