Stuart Alan Rose

Stuart Alan Rose

"For the British retail executive Stuart Alan Ransom Rose, see Stuart Rose."

Stuart Alan Rose (born November 11, 1954) is CEO and Chairman of the Board for Rex Stores Corp—a Dayton, Ohio-based electronics company he took public and established nationally. He also serves as Chairman of the Board for Oil Shale Exploration Company (OSEC). Rose is a true entrepreneur, buying Rex at the age of 25 when it consisted of only four local stores. An Emory University graduate, Rose started his career as a research analyst at Bain & Company. Rose then moved to New York City where he was a merger and acquisition broker under his mentor, Victor Niederhoffer, at Niederhoffer Cross and Zeckhauser. In the 2 ½ years Rose spent at Niederhoffer, he’d put together approximately 15 deals and became senior vice president by the age of 24. It was while working for Niederhoffer that Rose found Rex and decided to purchase the company himself.

Early life

Stuart Rose grew up in New Orleans with his parents and his three siblings. He attended Emory University, where he obtained a Bachelor’s of Business Administration in Accounting. Even as a college student, Rose displayed the entrepreneurial spirit. During his summer vacations, he bought suntan lotion on consignment and then sold it blanket to blanket on the beaches of Florida, living off the profits. Rose was later accepted to Harvard Business School, but deferred enrollment and began his career in investment banking.


Rose purchased Rex from Sterling Margolis in 1980 after marketing the company for Niederhoffer Cross and Zeckhauser. At the time, Rex was only a 4-store chain in Dayton, Ohio. In 1984, Rose took the company public. The initial public offering raised $18 million, most of which was used for working capital. By the end of that fiscal year, sales had risen 36.7 percent to $118.7 million. Rose later grew the chain to a 227-store retailer with locations in 23 states, mainly through acquisitions.

Rex has expanded its offering from its initial focus on radios, to include a broad selection of brand name televisions, camcorders, visual and audio equipment and household appliances. Rex’s business strategy was unique for the consumer electronics market. The strategy placed emphasis on small and medium-sized “niche” markets, efficient operations, local newspaper advertising and an “everyday low price” policy. By focusing on the smaller, rural markets which had lower overhead costs and lacked major competitors, Rex was able to earn high profit margins while still offering the lowest price. Opportunistic buying and a no-frill/low overhead business approach also enabled Rex to keep prices low. Rex would receive price discounts from suppliers by purchasing canceled shipments and close-out, or year-end models.

Besides electronics, Rex is an active alternative energy investor. In 1998, Rex began investing in synthetic fuel. In 2006, Rex began investing in organizations which construct and operate ethanol plants.


* [ Dayton business Journal]
* [ Rex Stores Website]

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