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Big Lots' Fishman Announces Plans to Retire

COLUMBUS, OHIO - Big Lots Inc.'s chairman, president and ceo, Steven S. Fishman, has told the company that he expects to retire - but will wait until a replacement is found.

MICHAEL FISHMAN Big LotsMichael Fishman - Big Lots
     To ensure "an orderly leadership transition," Fishman - who assumed his current roles in July 2005 - said he will continue to serve in his current roles until his successor is appointed.
     The Board has retained Korn/Ferry International to conduct a search, both internally and externally, for ceo candidates.
     Philip E. Mallott, a nine-year member of the board and the chairman of its audit committee, noted Fishman has "provided Big Lots with outstanding leadership and financial results during his tenure. After nearly 40 years in retail, the board of directors understands and supports his desire to shift his focus and put his family first. We are pleased he has agreed to play a continuing role with the company during the transition and provide his continued services and expertise to the company in a consulting capacity following his retirement."
     Fishman, whose retail career spans almost 40 years - cited several of his accomplishments over his years at Big Lots, including: record levels of sales and productivity per selling square foot; growing U.S. operating profit to $358 million in fiscal 2011, compared to $27 million in fiscal 2005; growing U.S. income from continuing operations to $220 million in fiscal 2011 from $21 million in fiscal 2005; generating $2.2 billion of U.S. operating cash flow; returning $1.9 billion of cash to shareholders in the form of share repurchase activity; improving inventory turnover by 20% since fiscal 2005; and international Expansion into Canada.
     He explained "this is an important time for my family and me. We're excited about embarking on this new chapter in our lives and I'm looking forward to continuing with Big Lots in my new role. I'd like to thank the Big Lots associates for their support, dedication, and hard work as we continue together on the journey toward our goals."

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