Dave & Buster’s Appoints New CFO

Darin Harper—a veteran of entertainment & dining brands including Main Event, On the Border, and Chuck E. Cheese—will take up his new post on June 17, ensuring a smooth transition from his predecessor, Michael Quartieri, who is retiring.

Darin Harper has been appointed chief financial officer of Dallas-based Dave & Buster’s Entertainment, an owner and operator of entertainment and dining venues, and will join the company on June 17.

Dave & Buster’s current CFO, Michael Quartieri, will continue to serve in that role until June 17 to ensure a smooth transition to his successor prior to his previously announced retirement.

“Darin was the obvious choice after an extensive national search for our next CFO,” Dave & Buster’s CEO Chris Morris said in a statement. “He’s an exceptional finance leader and having had the pleasure of working alongside him at various points in my career, I am extremely confident he’s the perfect individual to drive our company’s finance team to new heights. His strategic insights, superior track record of execution, and in-depth knowledge of the out-of-home entertainment space will be a huge asset to our company and allow him to hit the ground running as we accelerate our growth journey in 2024 and beyond.”

Experienced CFO for entertainment & dining companies

Harper previously was EVP, chief financial officer for Coppell-based Main Event Entertainment from March 2017 through its acquisition by Dave & Buster’s in June 2022, overseeing all finance, accounting, legal, risk and audit functions.

While at Main Event, Harper helped lead the company through significant growth, scaling efficiently while positioning the company for more data-driven analytics, focused on enhancing the guest experience and improving profitability.

Contemporaneous with that role, Harper also served as Group CFO for Main Event’s parent company, Ardent Leisure, based in Sydney, Australia, from June 2018 through June 2022. Harper has spent most of his more-than-25-year finance career in public and private sector multisite consumer, retail, and entertainment brands, including roles as CFO at On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina and principal accounting officer at Chuck E. Cheese.

Most recently, he was CFO of World Choice Investments, an operator of large, themed family entertainment attractions. Harper started his career with PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Joining ‘an iconic brand’

“Dave & Buster’s is an iconic brand and the leader in scaled out-of-home entertainment, with a lot of room for growth,” Harper said in a statement. “The company’s strategic plan presents a tremendous amount of tangible upside that I look forward to achieving and made for an easy decision to accept the opportunity. I’m excited to rejoin Chris and the rest of the talented management team at this important juncture in the Company’s trajectory as we work together to deliver meaningful shareholder value.”

Founded in 1982, Dave & Buster’s is the owner and operator of 223 venues in North America that offer premier entertainment and dining experiences to guests through two distinct brands: Dave & Buster’s and Main Event.

The company has 164 Dave & Buster’s branded stores in 42 states, Puerto Rico, and Canada and offers guests the opportunity to “Eat Drink Play and Watch,” all in one location. The company also operates 59 Main Event branded stores in 20 states across the country, and offers state-of-the-art bowling, laser tag, hundreds of arcade games and virtual reality,

Get on the list.
Dallas Innovates, every day.

Sign up to keep your eye on what’s new and next in Dallas-Fort Worth, every day.

One quick signup, and you’re done.  

R E A D   N E X T

  • Coppell-based Dave & Buster's Entertainment Inc. Chief Financial Officer Michael Quartieri will retire effective April 30, the owner and operator of entertainment and dining venues announced. He will continue to serve as CFO until a successor is appointed and provide advisory services to ensure a smooth transition before his retirement date, the company said. Dave & Buster's has retained a nationally recognized recruiting firm to search for the CFO post, the company said. "On behalf of the management team and our board, I want to thank Michael for his significant contributions and leadership over the past two years at Dave…

  • In 2022, we told you about two next-gen, robotics-packed Walmart facilities that were coming to Lancaster, just south of Dallas: a 1.5 million-square-foot automated fulfillment center and a 730,000 square-foot automated grocery distribution center. The first opened last year and the second is still under construction. When it's completed, it will complete a trifecta of transformation in the region, including a retrofitted 1.2-million-square-foot distribution center in Sanger, north of Denton.

  • With its new Dallas headquarters, fresh identity, and a mission to amplify "fan insights," Leap is set to integrate Epic's invaluable "experiential e-commerce data" into its comprehensive range of solutions.

  • A new entertainment concept called "Great Big Game Show" is set to open in late November at Grandscape in The Colony, featuring a real-life, interactive game show where the patron is the contestant. It's the second location in the nation for the concept from the creators of The Escape Game. “The Escape Game brings us so much joy because we get to witness our guests having a blast with what we've created. We introduced Great Big Game Show to offer more fun to more guests in a whole new and exciting way,” Jonathan Murrell, co-founder and CMO of The Escape…

  • Last Thursday evening, Trammell S. Crow hosted a "Half Earth Day" event at his home to "celebrate Mother Nature, Texas Style." But there was another reason to revel: EarthxTV, broadcasting 24/7 from Oak Lawn in Dallas, is channeling change. The global network reaches over 60 million homes in more than 70 countries—and has new a"100% environmental news" program.