Sears owner to shutter another 96 stores

The parent company of Sears and Kmart is closing another 96 stores, a sign hedge fund baron Eddie Lampert is struggling to revive the ailing retailer after buying it out of bankruptcy earlier this year.

After the latest round of closures, the company will have only 182 stores in operation. That’s down from roughly 425 locations earlier this year, and from as many as 2,500 stores when Sears and Kmart first merged in 2005.

Sears also secured $250 million in new financing, Transformco, the holding company for Sears and Kmart, said Thursday in announcing the closures.

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Lampert purchased Sears for $5.2 billion in January as part of a plan he said will save up to 50,000 jobs around the U.S.

The fall of Sears

After their merger, Sears and Kmart steadily lost sales amid fierce retail industry competition, changing consumer tastes and the rise of ecommerce. It declared bankruptcy in late 2018. Sears hasn’t recorded a profit since 2010 and tallied 11 consecutive years of declining sales.

Following is a map of the 96 Sears and Kmart locations that are slated to close by February:

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