Sears, the 132-year-old retailer, announced that they have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and will be closing another 142 stores before the end of the year. This once beloved retailer will join a growing list of companies who struggled to keep their doors open in today’s tech driven market. The way in which we shop has evolved significantly over the past few decades, and advancements in technology have been the driving force in the rise and demise of businesses throughout the world.
Shares for Sears Holding Corp, the parent company to Sears and Kmart, fell below $1 for the first time this year and the Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing indicated that the company was losing around $125,000 each month. Reports indicate that Sears Holding Corp may finalize a bankruptcy financing package worth around $600 million in hopes of keeping their shelves stocked for this upcoming holiday shopping season. According to Eddie Lampert, the CEO, bankruptcy will allow Sears to “strengthen its balance sheet, enabling the Company to accelerate its strategic transformation, continue right sizing its operating model, and return to profitability” though some experts predict that they will not be able to generate enough cash flow to keep their doors open.
Sears Holdings Corp once operated close to 2,000 stores back in 2013 but that number has now fallen to 687. The Sears store that occupied a large portion of the Metcalf South Shopping Center, one of the biggest locations in the Kansas City metro, closed their doors earlier this year. Unfortunately, this means that some of their employees will be forced to find a new source of income. However, the 142 locations could be seen as an opportunity for other businesses. Sears stores are already being replaced with small businesses, Planet Fitness gyms, shopping centers, and AMC movie theaters.
The hearing to finalize Sears' bankruptcy financing is set for November 15, according to a court filing.
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