February 5, 2018 / 6:13 PM / a year ago

Rent-A-Center to nominate Engaged Capital's board candidate

Feb 5 (Reuters) - Rent-A-Center Inc said on Monday it will nominate an independent director, recommended by activist investor Engaged Capital, to the rent-to-own furniture retailer’s board.

Shares of the company, which has been under pressure from activist hedge funds Engaged Capital and Marcato Capital, fell 2.2 percent to $9.53 in afternoon trading.

Engaged Capital, which owns nearly 17 percent of Rent-A-Center, has been pressuring the company to sell itself, arguing that an overhaul of the retailer could be best achieved in the hands of private owners.

Rent-A-Center said Engaged Capital’s nominee would replace Rishi Garg, a current member of the company’s board.

The furniture retailer has been rejecting takeover bids from private equity firms such as HIG Capital and Lone Star Funds. Buyout firm Vintage Capital Management LLC in January, agreed not to raise its stake in Rent-A-Center or seek to gain control of its board as they discuss a potential deal. (Reporting by Vibhuti Sharma in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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