Sears is closing its last department store in Illinois, the retailer’s home state

The Sears division retailer within the Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg, a Chicago suburb, will shut on November 14.

Transformco, which acquired Sears Holdings after the corporate filed for chapter in 2018, confirmed its plans to redevelop the property.

“We intend to reinvigorate and maximize the worth of the true property whereas enhancing the buyer expertise with in style retailers that match the regional draw of Woodfield Mall,” mentioned Scott Carr, president of Actual Property for Transformco.

Transformco mentioned the corporate is targeted on rising and the Sears Residence Providers enterprise.

“That is a part of the corporate’s technique to unlock the worth of the true property and pursue the best and finest use for the advantage of the area people,” Larry Costello, Transformco’s public relations director mentioned in an announcement.

Sears will nonetheless have a presence in Illinois. There are 11 Sears Hometown Shops within the state, working primarily in small cities by impartial sellers or franchisees of Transformco associates.

The shops are usually between 6,000 to eight,000 sq. ft — far smaller than Sears department shops which had been every greater than 100,000 sq. ft — and promote primarily onerous items and home equipment. Transformco’s technique is to function extra shops just like the Hometown Sears.

Sears is dying a quiet, invisible death

There at the moment are 300 Sears and Kmart shops nonetheless open within the US, down from almost 700 in October 2018, when Sears declared chapter. At its peak, the corporate operated greater than 3,000 shops.

As soon as the nation’s predominant retailer and its largest employer, Sears opened its first retail retailer in 1925 in Chicago and closed its final location there in 2018.
Covid has additional decimated your complete division retailer business, forcing excessive finish retailers like Neiman Marcus and funds department shops like JCPenney into chapter 11. Sears Holdings emerged from chapter in February 2019. A second Chapter 11 submitting for the corporate could be the end for Sears and Kmart.
Amazon may take over old JCPenneys and Sears to try and speed up deliveries

“I used to be shocked it wasn’t liquidated already,” mentioned Reshmi Basu, analyst with Debtwire and an skilled in retail bankruptcies. “Historical past exhibits a [second bankruptcy] for a retailer nearly all the time leads to liquidation.”

Critics of former CEO of Sears Holdings Eddie Lampert argued he was extra within the firm’s actual property than its retail operations. Lampert, a hedge fund operator with an experience in actual property, has redeveloped many former Sears areas. After he stepped down as CEO, Lampert was eventually sued by Sears Holdings for allegedly stripping away the corporate’s property because it was sliding into chapter 11.

CNN’s Chris Isidore contributed to this report.

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