President and Chief Executive Officer of Boston Inc.
From the age of six, Bill Fonti has followed in his father’s footsteps. Joining him for chores at the family furniture store on Sunday afternoons, to now succeeding him as President and Chief Executive Officer of Boston Inc. (operating as Furniture & ApplianceMart and Ashley Furniture Homestores).
In an industry where the success rate for second-generation leaders is alarmingly small, barely 30% of companies survive the transition; Bill has excelled and propelled his family’s business to the front of the Midwest’s independent retailer market.
For 23 years of Boston Inc.’s 43-year existence, Bill has been an active participant in its development. From stocking and delivery, to customer service, sales, training and then management, Bill has worked the company from the ground up.
After taking over the reigns in 2001, when Boston Inc. had 80 employees and two retail stores, Fonti has built the company into what it is today; the second largest furniture, mattress, appliance and HDTV retailer in the state of Wisconsin. This growth would not have been possible without Fonti’s focus on cost controls, cash flow management and, most importantly, profitability.
Now at 10 stores strong with 280 employees and over $46 million in annual revenue, Fonti has firmly established Boston Inc. as Wisconsin’s leader in customer service, low prices and selection and continues to grow each year.
Outside of business, Fonti has a deep commitment to the community and the need to serve. He has been personally involved in numerous not-for-profit organizations such as the Ministry Foundation, Boys and Girls Club, Toys for Tots and Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Fonti has an ongoing commitment to the Marshfield Clinic. He began fundraising in 2004 and to date has raised over $800,000, which supports breast cancer research, mobile mammography and childhood diabetes. He is a current member of the Development Committee of the Marshfield Clinic.
More than anything else, Fonti enjoys spending time with his 6 year-old daughter Rose. They enjoy cooking, going to the park and watching movies together.