Audio/Video Affiliates, Inc. (Specimen)

Audio/Video Affiliates, Inc. (Specimen)
Item# 4286ava

REX Stores Corporation, a prominent retailer of consumer electronics and appliances in the Midwest and Southeast, originally began as Audio/Video Affiliates, Inc. REX grew from a 4-store chain in Dayton, Ohio, to a 132-store retailer with locations in 23 states. This growth occurred primarily through acquisition. The chain is headquartered in Ohio.

The company changed its name from Audio/Video Affiliates, Inc., in August 1993 to more accurately connect the holding company with its retail affiliates. REX has expanded its product mix significantly from its initial focus on radios to include a broad selection of brand name televisions, camcorders, and video and audio equipment (known in the industry as "brown goods"), as well as major household appliances (known in the industry as "white goods"), including microwaves, air conditioners, refrigerators, washers, dryers, and ranges. The company ventured into jewelry sales in the early 1990s.

REX Stores Corp. was founded as REX Radio, a single outlet in a Dayton hotel storefront, in 1926. During the 1950s, the company expanded into televisions and subsequently changed its name to REX Radio & TV. The store established a long-standing volume-buying strategy in the 1960s when it became a founding member of the NATM Buying Corporation. In the late 1980s, REX joined Silo, Highland, and Circuit City in the formation of a new purchasing organization, Group 4. By the early 1990s, REX continued to employ its volume-oriented strategy, but did so independently.

Faced with massive debt and still eager to expand, Chariman Stuart Rose (whose printed signature appears on this piece) elected to take his chain public in 1984 under a holding company, Audio/Video Affiliates, Inc. The initial public offering raised $18 million at $5 per share, $10 million of which was used for working capital.

By the late 1980s, the consumer electronics chain numbered over 100 stores, but such rapid expansion required a retrenchment. Late in 1988, a reorganization plan had been created; its primary element was Audio/Video Affiliates, Inc.'s acquisition by a newly created unit of Citicorp, AV Holdings. The transaction, valued at $98 million, was for all of Audio/Video's 11.5 million shares. By the end of the year, however, the deal was canceled, due to skyrocketing interest rates on the junk bonds that would have financed about half of Citicorp's purchase. Citicorp did, however, acquire about 15 percent of Audio/Video's stock, which it agreed to sell back to the company in 1991.

Close Up of Vignette

Certificate: Common Stock, specimen, late 1900s

Printer: Security-Columbian / United States Bank Note Company

Dimensions: 8 (h) x 12 (w)

State: OH-Ohio

Subject Matter: Retail and Related | Specialty Retail | Specimen Pieces

Vignette Topic(s): Allegorical Featured | Allegorical Truth | Globe Featured | Computers/Technology

Condition: No fold lines, punch hole cancels in the signature areas and body, very crisp.

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