ABRA Auto Body & Glass announced that Duane Rouse plans to transition from day-to-day operations, stepping down as CEO to assume the role of vice chairman of the board of directors. Rouse will continue to serve as CEO until a replacement is appointed. ABRA has commenced an executive search for a successor.
“As I prepare to step back from day-to-day operations and move into my new role, I want to thank our more than 5,000 employees who have been the secret to our success in growing into a leading national damaged vehicle repair company,” said Rouse. “I am confident that under the leadership of a new CEO, supported by our current best-in-the-business executive team, ABRA will continue as a reliable partner for insurers while maintaining rapid and profitable growth.”
Under Rouse’s leadership, ABRA has grown substantially while maintaining profitability. In addition to adding more than 150 new locations in the past two years, Rouse also helped position ABRA for the long-term, building a deep and capable team of executives to lead the company. Under Rouse’s leadership as CEO since 2011, the company’s system-wide revenue has increased from under $300 million to more than $1 billion.
Looking forward, Rouse added, “With a successful strategy and accomplished executive team in place, ABRA is well-positioned for the future. The company is in a position of strength, and now is the time to transition day-to-day leadership to a new chief executive who will lead the company into its next chapter of growth. I will remain a significant shareholder and, through my vice chairman role, I look forward to continuing to be part of ABRA’s very bright future.”
Erik Ragatz, current chair of the ABRA board and managing director of private equity firm Hellman & Friedman, ABRA’s majority shareholder, said, “During his 20 year tenure – and particularly in his five years as CEO – Duane not only helped aggressively grow the company through both strategic acquisitions and internal initiatives, but also built a wonderful organization and business. We are now beginning a search that will identify CEO candidates with the right experience and cultural fit for the organization. Duane will be an important voice in this process, and remain an important part of ABRA as he assumes the role of vice chairman.”