Grant Thornton veteran Mark O’Hare joins board of Super Retail Group

10 April 2023 2 min. read
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After spending over three decades with Grant Thornton, Mark O’Hare has retired from the firm’s partnership and taken on a non-executive board role at ASX listed Super Retail Group.

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange, Super Retail Group announced that company founder Reg Rowe is retiring from the organisation that he helped build into one of Australia’s leading lifestyle retailers.

Reg Rowe founded Super Retail’s original company in 1972 as a mail-order business. He served as managing director until 1996, and became chairman from 1996 to 2004. He has been a non-executive director since the company listed on the ASX in 2004.

Mark O’Hare, Non-executive Director, Super Retail Group

Today, the $2.9 billion retailer operates 716 stores in Australia and New Zealand across Supercheap Auto, sporting goods retailer Rebel Sport, camping and fishing chain BCF and outdoor clothing chain Macpac. In its 2022 financial year, the company booked record sales and a healthy profit margin.

In a letter made public, Rowe said that departing the company was not an easy call to make, but the appropriate decision. “I’m sure everyone would agree that 50 years is a good innings,” he said. Rowe, who holds nearly 30% of the company, added that he will remain a key shareholder and called his 50 years in retail “an amazing ride”.

Mark O’Hare: Rowe’s longtime advisor

Rowe’s successor O’Hare is his long-time business adviser – stretching back more than 35 years – and serves as the chairman of the advisory group of his private investment group, Re-Grow Capital Group.

O’Hare is a company veteran of accounting and consulting firm Grant Thornton. He joined the firm in 1991 (following three years at EY) and played an instrumental role in the growth of its Private Business Tax & Advisory practice, which provides business advisory and taxation services to (ultra) high net wealth individuals and family offices.

“We congratulate Mark’s appointment at Super Retail Group,” said Michael Pittendrigh, Grant Thornton’s national managing partner of Private Business Tax & Advisory. “We value Mark’s significant contribution to the firm over the last 32 years and are supportive of his appointment as director on the board of Super Retail Group.”

Ahead of O’Hare’s formal stand for election at Super Retail’s annual meeting on October 25, Rowe said that he is confident he is leaving the company in safe hands. “Sally [chair Salle Pitkin] and Anthony [chief executive Anthony Heraghty] have the right strategy in place to grow the business and deliver for shareholders.”

Commenting on the leadership transition, Pitkin called Rowe a giant of Australian retailing who was pivotal to the development of Super Retail into one of Australia’s leading lifestyle retailers. “Although Reg retires from his formal role with the board, we are delighted that he intends to continue his regular visits to our stores and offices, ensuring he will remain a familiar face for our team members,” she said.