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Sears to close 72 stores in near future

Published 04 June 2018

Retail firm Sears said that it will close 72 stores as part of its efforts to streamline its operations and focus on Best Stores.

The company has stated that it has identified 100 non-profitable stores, of which 72 will start store closing sales in the near future. 

The company made the announcement in its first quarter 2018 results, which it said was a challenging quarter.

Sears reported a net loss attributable to shareholders of $424m, or $3.93 loss per diluted share, for the quarter, compared to net income of $245m, or $2.29 earnings per diluted share, reported in the year-ago period.

The company generated total revenues of about $2.9bn during the first quarter of 2018, compared with $4.2bn in the prior year quarter, with store closures contributing to about two thirds of the decline.

Total comparable store sales dropped 11.9% during the quarter, comprised of a 9.5% decline at Kmart and a 13.4% decline at Sears.

The company said it will continue to evaluate its network of stores, which are a critical component in the transformation, and will make further adjustments as required and as warranted.

Sears Holdings chairman and CEO Edward Lampert said: "In a challenging quarter, we continued to focus on our strategic transformation, identifying additional opportunities to streamline operations and adjust inventory and operating expenses while staying focused on our Best Members, Best Categories and Best Stores.

“Our Shop Your Way membership program and Integrated Retail Strategy are our key priorities, and we continue to look for new ways to leverage our Shop Your Way ecosystem to drive improvements in value for our members and to increase the frequency and amount of their engagement."

The company has started a process to explore the sale of the Kenmore brand and related assets, the Sears Home Improvement Products business of the Sears Home Services division and the PartsDirect business of the Sears Home Services division.  A special committee has been formed to complete this process.

Image: Sears store at Vernon Hills, Illinois. Photo: Courtesy of Sears Brands, LLC.