posttrib
PICTURESQUE 
Weather Updates

St. John Kmart to close; no date announced

Maps

Updated: December 29, 2011 6:07PM



The St. John Kmart made a list of Sears and Kmart stores that are set to close in 2012.

The exact closing date of the store, located at 9550 Wicker Ave., has yet to be announced. The list covered 79 stores that are part of a planned shuttering of 100 to 120 stores.

Sears Holdings wouldn’t detail the exact impact on jobs, but a typical store employs between 40 and 80 people.

On Tuesday, the parent company of Sears and Kmart announced plans to close at least 100 stores to raise cash — a move that sparked speculation about whether the 125-year-old retailer can avoid a death spiral fed by declining sales and deteriorating stores.

The projected closings represent only about 3 percent of Sears Holdings’ U.S. stores. And the company has actually added stores since the Sears-Kmart merger in 2005. It has about 3,560 stores in the U.S., up from 3,500 right after the merger, thanks to the addition of more small stores.

But the company hinted that more closings could be on the horizon as it focuses on honing the better-performing stores.

Sears Holdings Corp. said that it would no longer prop up “marginally performing” locations. The company pledged to refocus its efforts on stores that make money.

As rivals Wal-Mart and Target Corp. spruced up stores in recent years, Sears Holdings struggled with falling sales and perceptions of dowdy merchandise.

Sears Holdings has watched its cash and short-term investments plummet by nearly half since Jan. 31, from about $1.3 billion to about $700 million.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.