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AARON'S RENT-TO-OWN ANNOUNCES SALE OF FIRST FRANCHISE

 AARON'S RENT-TO-OWN ANNOUNCES SALE OF FIRST FRANCHISE
 ATLANTA, April 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R), an operating division of Aaron Rents, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARON), the nation's largest furniture rental and sales company, today announced the sale of its first franchise store and reported strong response to its initial franchise marketing efforts.
 The first Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) franchise will be located in Hammond, La., and will open within the next few months, according to R. Charles Loudermilk Sr., chairman and chief executive officer of Aaron Rents, Inc.
 "Several more RTO franchises will be awarded soon as the result of the overwhelming response to our initial advertising," Loudermilk said. "We received almost 200 inquiries in little more than a month after announcing the new franchise program in selected markets of the Southeast. There's been a lot of excitement about the program as people learn how it works and see the size and strength of the rent- to-own market. However, we are being very selective in awarding Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) franchises, and the number of franchises probably will not exceed 20 over the next 12 months.
 "We at Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) are also excited about the opportunities for growth in this market," Loudermilk added. "Our company-owned stores have been very successful, and we have the management ability to assist and support franchise operators in start- up and continuing operations."
 Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) currently operates 31 company-owned stores in major metropolitan areas and plans continuing expansion of these profitable units.
 Franchise stores will be located in smaller markets offering the greatest growth potential and will not compete with company-owned stores in larger market areas, Loudermilk explained.
 "With our 37 years of experience in the rental business, our company is now in an excellent position to move toward strong penetration of the rent-to-own market, both with franchised and company-owned stores," Loudermilk said.
 The rent-to-own market offers tremendous opportunities. Statistics compiled by the Association of Progressive Rental Organizations (A-PRO) show more than 15 percent of America's 93 million households, or approximately 14 million households, are prospective rent-to-own customers. These households have annual earnings of less than $35,000 and generally operate on a "cash and carry basis," according to the trade association.
 No more than 25 percent of the RTO market has been captured, A-PRO estimates, leaving most of this profitable business untapped.
 Among the competitive strengths of Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) are its line of furniture and its 12-month rent-to-own program, unique in the industry which otherwise maintains an 18-month payoff. With its five furniture manufacturing plants, Aaron's holds advantages in production costs and pricing, while the 12-month rent-to-own program has proven highly successful.
 In addition to extensive franchise support, Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) provides training, advertising and marketing, inventory financing, and economies of scale that afford large volume discounts to the franchisees in purchases of products for their stores.
 One of the outstanding features of Aaron's Rent-To-Own(R) is its management information system, called ARTOSS. Developed specifically for the RTO stores, ARTOSS provides detailed sales information and operational control data. Technical staff support is also available to franchisees 10 hours a day.
 Aaron Rents, Inc., based in Atlanta, operates more than 155 stores in 22 states for the sale and rental of residential and office furniture and equipment. The company produces furniture at five plants in Georgia and Florida.
 -0- 4/20/92
 /CONTACT: Gilbert L. Danielson, vice president, Finance and chief financial officer of Aaron Rents, 404-231-0011/
 (ARON) CO: Aaron Rents, Inc. ST: Georgia, Louisiana IN: REA SU:


EA-BN -- AT014 -- 0157 04/20/92 14:44 EDT
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Date:Apr 20, 1992
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