Coverage: Sears is closing more than 100 stores
Lauren Thomas of CNBC.com had the news:
That consists of 64 Kmart stores and 39 Sears stores, all of which are expected to shut between early March and April.
“We will continue to close some unprofitable stores as we transform our business model so that our physical store footprint and our digital capabilities match the needs and preferences of our members,” the company said in a statement.
Sears wouldn’t say how many of its employees would be impacted by the closings but did say the majority of the jobs are part-time positions, and eligible associates will receive severance.
Liquidation sales will begin as early as Jan. 12 at the closing stores, Sears said.
Zlati Meyer of USA Today reported that the closings came despite strong holiday sales:
Though U.S. retail holiday sales were better than they’ve been in years — up 4.9%, the largest increase since 2011, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse — the industry continues to suffer.
The Sears and Kmart news came the same day Macy’s announced that it was cutting 5,000 jobs and shuttering an additional seven stores in six states.
Sears stock closed at $3.58, down 18 cents or 4.79%, on Thursday.
Phil Wahba of Fortune reported that Sears announced an earlier round of closings just two months ago:
The latest announcement comes only two months after Sears’ most recent store closing news, which followed a spate of such announcements earlier in 2017. The company has closed hundreds of locations in the last few years.
The retailer, whose comparable sales declines have worsened in recent quarters despite the elimination of so many weak stores, has said repeatedly it is trying to reinvent itself as a company less reliant on physical space. In its most recent quarter, Sears Holdings said comparable sales fell 17% at its namesake stores and 13% at Kmart. It was the 24th quarter of comparable sales declines in a row for the company.
“We will continue to close some unprofitable stores as we transform our business model so that our physical store footprint and our digital capabilities match the needs and preferences of our members,” the company said in a statement. The liquidation sales will start on January 12 and the stores are set to close between early March and early April.
The company has lost more than $10 billion in the last six years, putting enormous strain on its finances and prompting it to sell some of its best assets in recent years and look for new sources of revenue such as its recent moves to sell its Kenmore appliances and DieHard batteries on Amazon.com.