CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The parent company of Kmart and Sears announced on Thursday it is closing one-third of its stores, two of which are in Northeast Ohio.
According to Transformco, the company that acquired the assets of Sears Holding Corporation in Feb. 2019 out of bankruptcy, 96 Kmart and Sears stories will be shutting down due to the “difficult but necessary decision to streamline our operations.”
The stores are slated to close by Feb. 2020, but the going-out-of-business sales are expected to begin on Dec. 2, according to the press release.
According to Transformco, the Tallmadge Kmart location at 555 South Ave. and the North Canton Kmart location at 1447 N. Main St. are on the chopping block.
The only other Ohio store that will be shutting down in the next few months is the Marietta Kmart location at 502 Pike St., according to the press release.
After the closures, Transformco will operate 182 stores and “continue to evaluate our Sears and Kmart footprint, consistent with our overall retail and service strategy.”
Transformco’s owners and a third-party investor have provided the company with about $250 million in new capital to “position Transformco for success by focusing on our competitive strengths and pruning operations that have struggled due to increased competition and other factors,” according to the press release.
The press release failed to mention what measures it will take for the currently unknown number of employees about to lose their jobs at the closing locations.
The press release did state:
"We will endeavor to create and deliver value through a strategic combination of our betterperforming retail stores and our service businesses, brands and other assets, and expect to realize a significant return on our extensive portfolio of owned and leased real estate. These assets include Innovel, which provides logistics solutions to businesses and consumers, Sears Home Services as well as Shop Your Way® and financial services, and our Kenmore® and DieHard brands. These businesses will also benefit from the recent acquisition by an affiliate of Transformco of Sears Hometown – a network of more than 400 independently-owned and operated, dealer-managed smaller-format stores that are known for offering customers a range of home products, including appliances, lawn & garden, tools and sporting goods.