Sears store at ShoppingTown Mall set to close, employees say

Sears store at ShoppingTown Mall set to close, employees say

Sears store at ShoppingTown Mall set to close, employees say

Sears Holdings has been shrinking its network of Sears and Kmart locations for years, shuttering Kmarts in Fitchburg, Newburyport, Great Barrington and Springfield and Sears stores in Burlington, Dedham and Lanesborough in the Berkshire Mall.

No word on when the store closings will begin. [Full list here.] Workers at those stores will receive severance pay and can apply for openings at other nearby Kmart or Sears stores, according to the company.

The locations of the possible Sears closures will be released later Thursday.

The company said it will close 72 stores as a part of its "ongoing efforts to streamline the company's operations".

Sears reported a net loss of $424 million in its most recent quarter, down significantly from the prior year period when it reported a $245 million profit. There are 17 traditional Sears stores in MI malls. The remainder of the non-profitable stores are being evaluated further. While most of that decline was due to previous store closings, sales fell 12 percent at the stores that remained open.

And those closures were on top of a previous announcement made by Sears stating that 166 Kmart and Sears stores would close in 2018.

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

Sears Holdings closed its Kmart location at 180 Main Saugus on earlier this month. Over a decade ago, Sears shares traded at around $100, but now sit around $3.

In addition to shedding its real estate, Sears now has an independent committee evaluating a deal where the company would sell some of its other assets, including the Kenmore brand, to Lampert's hedge fund, ESL Investments.

Sears has cut its store count in half within the last five years.

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