Trump Says Sears Bankruptcy Is a ‘Very, Very Sad’ Moment

Sears CEO Eddie Lampert and a Sears store

Sears, the 125-year-old United States department store chain that was once the biggest retailer in the world, has filed for bankruptcy after years of losses and mounting competition from online rivals such as Amazon. He's shuttered hundreds of money-losing stores, cut more than US$1 billion in annual expenses, and spun off units such as Lands' End. The company had 506 Sears stores and 360 Kmart stores in August. In the last two years alone, it closed more than 725 Sears and Kmart stores nationwide. Sears and Kmart had some 3,500 locations when they merged under Lampert in 2005; now there are about 900 nationwide. Much of his focus has turned to Sears' online presence over upkeep on physical storefronts, many of which total thousands of square feet. Only a handful of full Sears and Kmart stores remain in MI. The original Kmart store in Garden City closed past year.

Sears Holdings Corp CEO Eddie Lampert has stepped in to contribute towards a financing package of between US$500 million and US$600 million that the U.S. department store operator was close to securing on Sunday (Oct 14) to fund operations during bankruptcy proceedings, people familiar with the matter said.

Sears said 142 stores would close in the next three months. Sears Canada Inc liquidated a year ago and about 12,000 people lost their jobs.

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Benton Harbor-based Whirlpool Corp.is Sears' seventh-largest creditor, owed more than $23 million. In a statement Monday, Whirlpool said it does not anticipate Sears' bankruptcy filing to have any impact on its full-year 2018 EPS guidance or financial results over the long term.

For decades, Sears was king of the American shopping landscape. But it wasn't able to keep up with shifting consumer habits as online rivals including Amazon.com Inc. siphoned off shoppers, while turnaround efforts were hobbled by mountains of debt.

Struggling retailer Sears, which has a store at the Natick Mall, has filed for bankruptcy. Sears recently added a restructuring expert as a company director for an additional layer of guidance on how to navigate a bankruptcy filing.

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