Sears store in Eau Claire will remain open

Sears store in Eau Claire will remain open

Sears store in Eau Claire will remain open

Sears closed 400 of its namesake and Kmart locations in 2017, and it said it would close around 160 more stores this year before Thursday's announcement.

They are just two of the 72 stores across the country troubled retailer Sears Holdings will shut down.

The closures in MI are part of the company's plan to shed 63 more unprofitable Sears and Kmart stores from its portfolio as the Illinois-based department store's downward spiral continues.

Liquidation sales will begin as early as June 14, according to the retailer. Sears is also looking to sell its Kenmore brand in an effort to raise some ready cash after selling off its Craftsman brand previous year.

Revenue fell 31.2 percent to $2.89 billion in the reported quarter, partly because of store closures. "Eligible associates impacted by these store closures will receive severance and will have the opportunity to apply for open positions at area Kmart or Sears stores", the company said in a release. The retailer put up for auction the property its stores occupy at Mid Rivers Mall and South County Center.

The lower sales resulted in a $424 million loss for Sears Holdings, the holding company that owns by Sears and Kmart.

Rob Riecker, Sears' chief financial officer, said the company's stores are "a critical component in our transformation".

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The company will have about 800 Sears and Kmart stores after the closings announced Thursday.

Lampert, who put Sears and Kmart under one company after helping pull Kmart out of bankruptcy, has long said hed save the famed department store.

The Illinois-based retailer had previously announced that 166 stores would close this year. No stores in Alabama are listed for closure.

As of May 5, Sears Holdings said its total cash balances were $466 million which includes restricted cash of $280 million.

This isn't the first time Sears has sold off a brand name it made famous.

In April, Lampert proposed that ESL Investments purchase Sears' Kenmore brand, its home-improvement business, its Parts Direct division, and some of the company's real estate. It also closed its stores in the Southpark Mall in Colonial Heights in January and in Regency mall in Henrico County in September.

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