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Carls Patio makes management changes

Paul Otowchits assumes duties of Gary Ecoff, who remains on board of directors

Paul Otowchits and Gary EcoffPaul Otowchits and Gary Ecoff
BOCA RATON, Fla. - Carls Patio, Inc. announced today that Gary Ecoff, president and founder of Carls Patio will be relinquishing his responsibilities as president in a planned management transition. Paul Otowchits has been named executive vice president and chief operating officer and will be assuming Ecoff's duties.

Ecoff founded Carls Patio in 1993 as a division of Carls Furniture. Starting with one store in North Palm Beach, Ecoff managed the expansion to what is today, an 18 store chain operating in Florida and California. In California, the Company owns five stores under the Berks Patio name.

Carl's Patio was acquired in 2008 by Weinberg & Bell Group, a private investment firm. Ecoff, a major shareholder of Carls Patio, assisted in arranging that acquisition.

"At the time of the buyout I agreed to remain as president for a minimum of three years before leaving," Ecoff said in a statement. "It has now been four years and I think that the time is right to implement the management succession plan." He will be pursuing other interests, but has not disclosed specific details. Ecoff continues as a major shareholder of the company and will remain on the board of directors.

Otowchits has been with Carls Patio since the beginning in a variety of managerial positions. He was named to the COO position in April 2012 as a prelude to today's announcement.

"Gary Ecoff and I have spent almost twenty years working together and it will be very different when he is not here every day," Otochits said. "I know that I can rely on him for advice going forward and I wish him all the best in the future."

Ronald E. Weinberg, a Principal of Weinberg & Bell Group stated, "As a founder and president, Gary has contributed a great deal to this organization, and Paul and his entire team are ready to continue Carls Patio growth into the future. The business has brand equity in the best markets in the country and we plan to build relationships with our current vendors and merchandise into product line extensions."


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