What shoppers need to know about Sears' bankruptcy

Sears posted a list of its closing stores online at https://searsholdings.com/docs/101518_store_closing_list.pdf.

In recent years, bankruptcy has not been kind to old-school retailers seeking a second life.

Electrolux hopes to continue selling its appliances at Sears after the iconic American retailer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

The company also announced that CEO Eddie Lampert will be stepping down effective immediately.

Simon Property Group, the largest US mall operator, has 59 Sears Holdings stores in its malls, the most of any REIT, but its exposure to the bankruptcy is "de minimis", he said.

"For somebody of my generation, Sears Roebuck was a big deal..."

The president lamented the status of the once prominent Sears, remembering the store's golden days, and he criticized its leadership for the situation.

Lampert and Mnunchin were roommates at Yale and Mnunchin joined Sears' board of directors in 2005. Sears has not turned a profit since 2011 and has $10 billion of debt.

"Over the last several years, we have worked hard to transform our business and unlock the value of our assets", said Edward S. Lampert, chairman of Sears Holdings.

Sears filed for bankruptcy on Monday - the deadline for a 134 million-dollar loan repayment which the firm could not pay.

But rents have risen in the best locations and a bankruptcy like Sears poses an opportunity for landlords to refresh their properties with new or better tenants, provided they win control of the sites during Chapter 11, which can be complicated.

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Most large USA malls are controlled by REITs.

It's possible more of the remaining 687 Sears and Kmart stores could close. Eventually, Sears became the largest USA retailer.

"Most of the company is gone", Dietderich said.

The company, inundated by debt and falling sales, said Monday that it would begin liquidation sales and close another 142 stores before the end of the year. Strong sales in the upcoming holiday season will be key in determining that.

ESL said in April it would be open to buying some of the company's assets and urged the department store to put the businesses on the block.

1893 - The company becomes Sears, Roebuck and Co.

But Walmart surpassed it in 1990 to become the largest retailer in the US and Sears struggled to compete with retail giants like Walmart, Target and Amazon.

"It's a sad thing that they are going bankrupt".

A Kmart that was demolished in Staten Island, New York, will result in rents 727 per cent higher when the new site opens with new tenants in 2020, Kimco Realty Corp said in a statement Monday, a sign of the upside the bankruptcy offers.

Sears' real estate footprint also is one of Kimco's largest, creating the opportunity to add more tenants.

1906 - Sears becomes a public company.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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