Metro-East News

Sears gets a reprieve from liquidation as chairman revises bid to save 425 stores

Can retail be rescued? Why so many U.S. stores are closing

Stores that have been staples of the American shopping tradition for decades are closing in large numbers. Take a closer look at the reasons why it’s so hard for retailers to stay open.
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Stores that have been staples of the American shopping tradition for decades are closing in large numbers. Take a closer look at the reasons why it’s so hard for retailers to stay open.

Sears Holdings Corp. was expected to ask a bankruptcy judge Tuesday if the company can proceed with liquidation, according to a report by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The request would have come after the corporation could not reach an agreement on Chairman Edward Lampert’s $4.4 billion takeover bid, the Post-Dispatch story stated. However, The Morning Call reported later Tuesday that the retailer has instead accepted Lampert’s bid, if he deposits $120 million by 4 p.m. Wednesday through his hedge fund.

USA Today reported the retailer, if a last-minute deal does not go through with the chairmen, could liquidate “within weeks.”

Sears Holdings Corp. , which owns Kmart and Sears, had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in mid October, buckling under its massive debt load and staggering losses. At that time, the St. Clair Square store location was to remain open.

The Sears at St. Clair Square is set to close in March, the store’s parent company confirmed Dec. 28.

It was not immediately clear after the announcement what may replace one of the largest contributors of sales tax to Fairview Heights.

Fairview Heights Mayor Mark Kupsky previously told the BND the city has been working on possible plans for the large retail space just in case a store closure became a reality.

But while stores are slated to close, Sears officials haven’t given up hope — at least on Twitter.

The Sears Social Media Team, or SMT, replied to several lively tweets about closing locations Monday morning in a rather

In one interaction, a user tweeted a picture of an empty Sears store and wrote “This was the scene today at my local @Sears - this location’s final day in business. This is what the death of retail looks like.”

Another user chimed in and wrote “Sears had a good run I would say.”

The Sears SMT replied “We would say that as well, but we are Marathon Runners, and we are still running. We may be slowing down, but we are not out of the race just yet. Don’t count us completely out. Happy Shopping! -SMT”

In another tweet, a user linked to a Chicago Tribune story about wrote “.@Sears prepares for possible liquidation as Chairman Eddie Lampert’s bid fails.”

The Sears team replied “Instead of Escape from LA - its like Escape from bankruptcy, Mr. Snake Plisskin. We are down, but not out... -SMT.”

In several tweets the Sears SMT encouraged people to shop online and thanked people for their support over the years.

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Belleville News-Democrat news editor Dana Rieck was selected as Editor and Publisher’s “25 Under 35 Newspaper Leaders” for 2018 and works with the Online News Association in St. Louis. She attended Colorado State University and grew up in Loveland, Colorado.
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