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Sears files for insolvency and closes more stores

The network of Sears stores has contracted significantly in recent years.

The network of Sears stores has contracted significantly in recent years.

American department store chain Sears has filed for insolvency (Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code) and is closing more stores. The group is also active in the home improvement market with its Sears and Kmart outlets as well as operating online shops. In addition to the 46 closures by November that were already announced, a further 142 stores are expected to close by the end of the year. Sears is in negotiations with the main shareholder, ESL Investments, regarding the sale of a large number of the stores to it.

The network of Sears stores has contracted significantly in recent years. Of the more than 1 400 branches in existence at the end of 2016, only 1 000 remained a year ago.

Personnel changes have also taken place. CEO Edward S. Lampert, also chairman and CEO of ESL, has stepped down, although he remains chairman of the Sears board. Instead of a CEO, an Office of the CEO is currently operating, constituted by Robert A. Riecker, chief financial officer, Leena Munjal, chief digital officer, Customer Experience and Integrated Retail, and Gregory Ladley, president of Apparel and Footwear. A restructuring committee has also been created, headed by corporate restructuring specialist and managing partner of M-III Partners Mohsin Y. Meghji, as chief restructuring officer.

|15 October 2018

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