Well-known stores closing in America

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

sears-logo-300x135 London, UK, January 2012: Sears has announced that it is closing many of its own stores and Kmart ones thought the continental USA and this announcement came just around Christmas time just a day or two before the New Year.

Florida will be hit the hardest by the closing of Sears and Kmart stores, losing 11, according to a preliminary list of 79 planned closures released Thursday.

Ohio, Michigan and Georgia are not far behind with six store closures planned in their states. Tennessee, North Carolina and Minnesota are set to lose four stores each.

A spokeswoman for Sears Holding Corp. said each store employs between 40 and 80 people.

None of the closures announced so far are in Sears' home state of Illinois.

The 125-year-old retailer said on Tuesday it would close up to 120 stores to raise cash.

The projected closings represent only about 3 percent of Sears Holdings' U.S. stores. Sears and Kmart merged in 2005. The company now has about 3,560 stores in the U.S. That's up from 3,500 immediately after the merger. A good sign it is, however, not, and could be a sign of the times to come.

Here is the list of closures announced so far:

*Alabama (3): Sears in Mobile; Kmart in Auburn and Gadsden.

*California (3): Sears in El Monte and San Diego (2).

*Colorado (3): Sears in Longmont; Kmart in Broomfield and Glenwood Springs.

*Florida (11): Sears in Crystal River, Deland, Port St. Lucie, Stuart, West Palm Beach; Kmart in Callaway, Fernandina Beach, New Smyrna Beach, Orange City, Pompano Beach and St. Augustine.

*Georgia (6): Sears in Macon; Kmart in Atlanta, Buford, Columbus, Douglasville and Jonesboro.

*Idaho (1): Sears in Lewiston.

*Indiana (3): Sears in Anderson; Kmart in Indianapolis and St. John.

*Iowa (2): Kmart in Cedar Rapids and Davenport.

*Kansas (1): Sears in Lawrence.

*Kentucky (3): Sears in Middleboro; Kmart in Hazard and Winchester.

*Maryland (1): Sears in Ellicott City.

*Michigan (6): Sears in Adrian, Brighton, Chesterfield Township, Harper Woods, Monroe and Washington Township.

*Minnesota (4): Kmart in Duluth, New Hope, White Bear Lake and Willmar.

*Mississippi (3): Sears in Columbus, Jackson and McComb.

*Missouri (2): Sears in Lee's Summit and St. Louis.

*New Hampshire (2): Sears in Keene and Nashua.

*North Carolina (4): Sears in High Point, Morehead City, Rocky Mount and Statesville.

*Ohio (6): Kmart in Chagrin Falls, Columbus, Medina, Springfield and Toledo (2).

*Oregon (1): Sears in Roseburg.

*Pennsylvania (2): Sears in Pottstown and Upper Darby.

*South Carolina (1): Sears in Sumter.

*Tennessee (4): Sears in Antioch, Cleveland, Oak Ridge; Kmart in Hendersonville.

*Virginia (3): Sears in Norfolk; Kmart in Midlothian and Richmond.

*Washington (2): Sears in Walla Walla; Kmart in Lacey.

*Wisconsin (2): Sears in West Baraboo; Kmart in Rice Lake.

On the other hand, those store closures of the giants, unless Walmart decides to step in, which would not be a good move, could be great for local independent stores to get onto Main Street again. And the operative word here is and must be “local”.

But, America has not been and is not alone as far as store closures at the end of the year are concerned.

In Britain, Barrats, a well-know shoe store, and a number of others, also have closed, or have announced that they are closing, their doors and about 2,000 jobs were lost just in the week running up to the New Year. Not a good beginning on both sides of the Atlantic for 2012.

© 2012