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Sears Holdings to close 68 Kmart and 10 Sears stores for turnaround

RBR Staff Writer Published 25 April 2016

Sears Holdings is planning to close 68 Kmart and 10 Sears stores this summer, as part of its restructuring strategy to make a turnaround.

sears store closures

The departmental store chain had said in February that it would quicken the pace of shutting down its unprofitable stores.

The latest move comes after the company carried out an extensive review of store portfolio, by taking into account historical and recent store performance and the lease expiration timings.

While Sears plans to close all of its stores and nearly all of Kmart stores in late July, the company will shut down its two Kmart stores by mid-September.

Sears Holdings chairman and CEO Edward S. Lampert said: "The decision to close stores is a difficult but necessary step as we take aggressive actions to strengthen our company, fund our transformation and restore Sears Holdings to profitability.

"We're focusing on our best members, our best categories and our best stores as we work to accelerate our transformation.

"Sears Holdings will continue to transform as the role of the store evolves to fit the way that members want to shop.

"Through our continued investments in Integrated Retail, our stores are a critical component of our strategy as we provide our members with industry-leading innovations such as Meet with an Expert, In-Vehicle Pickup and Return and Exchange in Five."

With the store closures, Sears expects to generate good amount of cash from the liquidation of store inventory and from the sale of certain real estate assets.

Earlier this month, Sears had said that it raised more than $1.2bn in debt financing to gain the capital needed to implement its restructuring strategy and meet its financial obligations.

The employees impacted through these changes will receive severance and also have an opportunity to apply for open positions at Kmart or Sears stores.

Image: Sears to close 68 stores to revive profitability. Photo: Courtesy of Nightscream/Wikipedia.