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Re/Max announces co-CEO arrangement between Contos, Liniger

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Re/Max co-founder Dave Liniger, who started the behemoth real estate franchisor with his wife, Gail, in 1971, is about to embrace another change in a long line of them.

Adam Contos

Adam Contos

After a brief break from running Re/Max caused by an illness in 2012, Liniger stepped back into the CEO’s seat in 2014; today, he announced that he will begin sharing the CEO title with Adam Contos, who was most currently Re/Max’s chief operating officer (COO).

“The appointment allows Liniger to focus on furthering the company’s leadership position in the industry while driving special strategic initiatives,” wrote Re/Max in a press release, adding that the franchisor “has employed the Co-CEO structure in several of its CEO transitions. The approach ensures continuity in Re/Max leadership, in its successful and unique business model, and in the overall company strategy.”

Serene Smith, who currently serves as the company’s senior vice president of financial planning and analysis and has been with Re/Max since 2006, will step into Contos’ shoes as the new COO, her fifth promotion at the company, according to her profile.

Re/Max operates Motto Mortgage in addition to its stable of real estate franchisors — according to the release, the company’s agent count grew to more than 110,000 agents last year.

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“I’m proud to have Adam, who has successfully led many key functions in our business over the last 13 years, partner with me at the CEO position,” said Liniger in a statement. “We have a talented and dedicated group of leaders at RE/MAX and I’ve been actively working with them to build our future. Under Adam’s leadership, I know this dynamic team will further our position as the number one name in real estate.”

Contos managed the company’s daily operations as the COO, including IT, HR, business development, events, brand marketing, communications, media and public relations, according to Re/Max.

Serene Smith

“Dave’s founding principles and culture of success along with the dedication of Re/Max agents and owners have made Re/Max the greatest real estate company in the world,” said Contos in a statement. “I’m honored to drive Re/Max forward on behalf of over 110,000 agents who represent this iconic brand by delivering exceptional service to their clients. We will continue to advance Re/Max and the real estate industry by delivering the products and services that have made our franchisees and agents so successful for the last four decades.”

“We’re fortunate to have a deep and talented executive team at Re/Max. They share the same drive and desire to succeed that I had when I created this company over 44 years ago,” Liniger added. “We’re all strongly aligned around the core strategy, values, culture and mission that have made this company great. I’m confident that the strength of our management team supported by our exceptional agents, brokers, franchise owners and employees will continue to drive our future growth and success.”

Editor’s note: This story has been updated. 

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