Sears Fears: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post Reply
User avatar
submariner
Founder of RetailWatchers.com
Founder of RetailWatchers.com
Posts: 440
Joined: February 22nd, 2009, 10:35 am
Location: Orange County Area, CA
Has thanked: 11 times
Been thanked: 9 times
Contact:
Status: Offline

Sears Fears: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by submariner » November 26th, 2018, 4:40 pm

Welcome to 2019, the writing is no longer just on the wall, it’s outlined in flashing, brilliant neon. Discuss.

Knight
Diamond Member
Diamond Member
Posts: 420
Joined: February 7th, 2016, 8:48 pm
Has thanked: 27 times
Been thanked: 3 times
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by Knight » January 1st, 2019, 9:35 am

The end of Sears Holdings has been here for awhile. As stores have leases that expire, they close.

I am looking at the remaining South Carolina store locations:

Kmart
Kmart #4016, Kmart Plaza, 1 Kmart Plaza, Greenville, South Carolina 29605-4442
Kmart #4141, 1500 Charleston Highway, West Columbia, South Carolina 29169-5048
Kmart #7616, 748 West Main Street, Lexington, South Carolina 29072-2545

Sears
Sears #1595, Haywood Mall, 700 Haywood Road, Greenville, South Carolina 29607-2725

Sears Auto Center
Sears Auto Center #6043, Haywood Mall, 700 Haywood Road, Greenville, South Carolina 29607-2725

Super S
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
Posts: 1563
Joined: April 1st, 2009, 9:27 pm
Has thanked: 5 times
Been thanked: 14 times
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by Super S » January 1st, 2019, 5:46 pm

With such a scaled back store count, plus some questionable locations being kept, there is simply no way they can get any kind of decent sales volume any more to make a case as a national retailer. Sears and Kmart have had so much bad press in 2018 that they have fallen off the radar of many people, even where Sears and/or Kmart are not closing. The perception already exists that the whole chain is shutting down.

The only way it will survive is if somebody other than Lampert gains control.

wnetmacman
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
Posts: 789
Joined: January 17th, 2010, 2:36 pm
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 9 times
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by wnetmacman » January 1st, 2019, 8:22 pm

After the last round of 80 closings, Louisiana will be down to a single Sears store, and no Kmarts at all. That single Sears is in Baton Rouge, in the Mall of Louisiana, store 1147. It's a smaller store, but even with Sears' troubles, still does a decent sales volume due to its location, and still features an Auto Center.

SHC cannot survive with such a small, scattered grouping of stores. I do not see the board, even being Fast Eddie's friends, voting for him to 'save' what's left, because he hasn't been able to do it thus far. His disillusioned view of customers as members, plus his unwillingness to improve anything beyond the value of what's left have been dragging the whole company down. It's time for the court or board to pull the plug.

The only thing we'll have an issue with after is who will step up and do all of what Sears once did. America has become a one-stop-shop customer group, and you simply don't have another retailer equipped or positioned like they once were. Walmart doesn't sell appliances or work on anything beyond replacing tires and changing oil. JCPenney doesn't have the service availability. Amazon doesn't have the retail presence. Macy's certainly won't stoop that low. Target shed all its extra businesses years ago. Lowe's has the appliance business, but doesn't do anything else. We simply do not have a retailer the caliber of what Sears (pre-Lampert) was capable of.

pseudo3d
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
Posts: 2611
Joined: November 12th, 2015, 7:01 pm
Been thanked: 3 times
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by pseudo3d » January 2nd, 2019, 5:40 pm

wnetmacman wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 8:22 pm
After the last round of 80 closings, Louisiana will be down to a single Sears store, and no Kmarts at all. That single Sears is in Baton Rouge, in the Mall of Louisiana, store 1147. It's a smaller store, but even with Sears' troubles, still does a decent sales volume due to its location, and still features an Auto Center.

SHC cannot survive with such a small, scattered grouping of stores. I do not see the board, even being Fast Eddie's friends, voting for him to 'save' what's left, because he hasn't been able to do it thus far. His disillusioned view of customers as members, plus his unwillingness to improve anything beyond the value of what's left have been dragging the whole company down. It's time for the court or board to pull the plug.

The only thing we'll have an issue with after is who will step up and do all of what Sears once did. America has become a one-stop-shop customer group, and you simply don't have another retailer equipped or positioned like they once were. Walmart doesn't sell appliances or work on anything beyond replacing tires and changing oil. JCPenney doesn't have the service availability. Amazon doesn't have the retail presence. Macy's certainly won't stoop that low. Target shed all its extra businesses years ago. Lowe's has the appliance business, but doesn't do anything else. We simply do not have a retailer the caliber of what Sears (pre-Lampert) was capable of.
JCPenney started selling heavy appliances a year or two likely in response to (or despite) Sears' problems, but I think that bombed. It is a pity about one stop shopping, as Walmart is mediocre in most categories, and even for supermarkets that have soft goods, they're pretty awful, with hard lines weak at best, and of course, no one really carries heavy appliances except maybe Lowe's and Best Buy.

Super S
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
Posts: 1563
Joined: April 1st, 2009, 9:27 pm
Has thanked: 5 times
Been thanked: 14 times
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by Super S » January 2nd, 2019, 6:45 pm

Who will step up and do what Sears once did? One word: Internet.

Part of the problem lies in the fact that so many stores tend to have limited selection, and that competition tends to sell the same products.

Part of the problem is that many chain stores give the impression that they exist to please shareholders and not the customer.

Part of the problem is inept store management that loses sight of company policies and this leads to inconsistent experiences with chain stores.

As for chains that could duplicate Sears: I can only really think of one. Walmart seems in the best position as they have greatly expanded their online shopping presence, sometimes also partnering with other companies. However, I think we will see more focus on internet, and less on superstores. We are already seeing Walmart building smaller supercenters.

There were others that more closely matched what Sears used to be. Montgomery Ward was VERY similar to Sears in many aspects. They carried many of the same product categories. JCPenney, starting in the 1960s, more directly competed with both Sears and Wards with a larger hardlines presence, but JCPenney went their own way in the 1980s.

JCPenney hinted at returning to hardlines with the return of appliances, but I agree this has been a flop. Brand selection is limited, and staffing of those departments is not good. Right now I don't see them shaking up their mix much, and wouldn't be surprised if appliances went away again.

Stores such as Fred Meyer have potential, but are scaling back general merchandise departments in favor of food, and have a weaker online presence.

Love it or hate it, Amazon has had an impact on just about everybody. It's up to the retailers to provide service, even if it means making a special order, and more need to step up and help customers order their products online in-store instead of telling customers to "go home and do it online yourself". Customers will not stay on one website when home and will look at other options. There are also many people who visit stores because they DON'T like online shopping, and would be more loyal if the stores made it more convenient to order online or use ship-to-store options at the store level.

mbz321
Gold Member
Gold Member
Posts: 205
Joined: March 11th, 2010, 7:52 pm
Been thanked: 1 time
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by mbz321 » January 3rd, 2019, 8:09 pm

wnetmacman wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 8:22 pm

The only thing we'll have an issue with after is who will step up and do all of what Sears once did. America has become a one-stop-shop customer group, and you simply don't have another retailer equipped or positioned like they once were. Walmart doesn't sell appliances or work on anything beyond replacing tires and changing oil. JCPenney doesn't have the service availability. Amazon doesn't have the retail presence. Macy's certainly won't stoop that low. Target shed all its extra businesses years ago. Lowe's has the appliance business, but doesn't do anything else. We simply do not have a retailer the caliber of what Sears (pre-Lampert) was capable of.

In a 2019 'Internet and big-box strips in every town' world, a one-stop shop like Sears simply isn't necessary, and is why most department stores (defunct and still existing) eliminated certain departments decades ago. Appliances aren't a thing consumers buy on a daily basis, so there is no issue stopping somewhere else to do so, same with auto repair (I think it is pretty amazing the Sears didn't throw in the towel years ago). Out of all the Walmart stores in my area, only one has automotive bays, and it's an older store. For the middle class, Costco seems to have taken over as a sort of one stop shop (my folks bought a dryer from Costco.com, no need to even go into a store), with other surrounding big boxes and grocery retailers filling in for the rest.

storewanderer
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
Posts: 4348
Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 3:54 pm
Been thanked: 31 times
Contact:
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by storewanderer » January 6th, 2019, 10:36 pm

I am sure this is a very fluid situation but Reuters and various other outlets are reporting today that Lampert's bid did not meet creditor requirements. As such a group called Abacus has been selected to run the full chain liquidation.

Inventory levels look terrible at the stores I've been to the past couple months (all Kmarts). The liquidators are going to need to bring in some merchandise of their own to generate interest in these sales.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sear ... SKCN1P103R

It will sure be interesting to see what comes of some of the "better" Kmart real estate (PR, Guam, assorted other stores that lack competition scattered around).

pseudo3d
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
Posts: 2611
Joined: November 12th, 2015, 7:01 pm
Been thanked: 3 times
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by pseudo3d » January 7th, 2019, 6:57 am

storewanderer wrote:
January 6th, 2019, 10:36 pm
I am sure this is a very fluid situation but Reuters and various other outlets are reporting today that Lampert's bid did not meet creditor requirements. As such a group called Abacus has been selected to run the full chain liquidation.

Inventory levels look terrible at the stores I've been to the past couple months (all Kmarts). The liquidators are going to need to bring in some merchandise of their own to generate interest in these sales.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sear ... SKCN1P103R

It will sure be interesting to see what comes of some of the "better" Kmart real estate (PR, Guam, assorted other stores that lack competition scattered around).
The Sears Outlet stores if I recall already use a mixture of merchandise from other sources, including from Lowe's or Home Depot (I can't remember which).

storewanderer
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
Posts: 4348
Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 3:54 pm
Been thanked: 31 times
Contact:
Status: Offline

Re: The Final Days of Sears & Kmart, 2019

Post by storewanderer » January 7th, 2019, 7:50 pm

pseudo3d wrote:
January 7th, 2019, 6:57 am
storewanderer wrote:
January 6th, 2019, 10:36 pm
I am sure this is a very fluid situation but Reuters and various other outlets are reporting today that Lampert's bid did not meet creditor requirements. As such a group called Abacus has been selected to run the full chain liquidation.

Inventory levels look terrible at the stores I've been to the past couple months (all Kmarts). The liquidators are going to need to bring in some merchandise of their own to generate interest in these sales.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sear ... SKCN1P103R

It will sure be interesting to see what comes of some of the "better" Kmart real estate (PR, Guam, assorted other stores that lack competition scattered around).
The Sears Outlet stores if I recall already use a mixture of merchandise from other sources, including from Lowe's or Home Depot (I can't remember which).
I think Sears Outlets are owned by Sears Hometown, I don't think they are under Sears Holdings. Confusing web here.

Post Reply