The New York Times reports:
Sears, which more than a century ago pioneered the strategy of selling everything to everyone, filed for bankruptcy protection early on Monday. The company had long ago given up its mantle as a retail innovator. It was overtaken first by big box retailers like Walmart and Home Depot and then, by Amazon as the go-to shopping destinations for clothing, tools and appliances.
In the last decade, Sears had been run by a hedge fund manager, Edward S. Lampert, who sold off many of the company’s valuable properties and brands but failed to develop a winning strategy to entice consumers who increasingly shopped online. The result has been a long painful decline. A decade ago, the company employed 302,000. Today, there are about 68,000 people working at Sears and Kmart, which Mr. Lampert also runs.
Sears, once the largest retailer in the U.S., has now filed for bankruptcy protection and said Monday morning it plans to close 142 more stores this year — adding to the stores the retailer already shuttered in 2018.
The company once operated more than 3,500 locations across the U.S. under its namesake Sears brand and Kmart. It recently had roughly 700 still in business and hopes to stay open through this holiday season, but with a much smaller footprint. Sears said liquidation sales are coming soon to the 142 stores.