Rapid City Kmart to close

Liquidation Alarm: Sears May Have Only 24 Hours Left

Liquidation Alarm: Sears May Have Only 24 Hours Left

That's in addition to the closure of 46 unprofitable stores that had already been announced on October 15.

At the time of its bankruptcy filing, Sears said it had 687 stores and 68,000 employees, 32,000 of whom are full-time. It could extend the deadline - or it could decide to accept defeat and begin a plan to close all of its stores and liquidate its assets. The company's chairman and biggest shareholder, Lampert loaned out his own money and put together deals to keep the company afloat and to turn whatever profit he could for ESL hedge fund. The Santa Barbara Sears store closure added up to another 72 jobs.

On the new list of stores to close are the Sears location at Westshore Plaza and the store at 9409 US 19 in Port Richey, as well as the Kmart store on Highway 301 in Ellenton.

So far a hedge fund controlled by Eddie Lampert, Sears' former CEO and now largest creditor, is the only entity to publicly disclose a plan to bid. If he manages to submit the bid by 4 p.m. Friday, Sears' advisors will have a week to determine if he is a "qualified bidder". The closures are part of the company's effort "to accelerate its strategic transformation and facilitate its financial restructuring". The final decision on Lampert's bid will be made by the judge overseeing Sears.

Earlier on Friday, Sears said it was closing 80 more stores.

Unless the retailer receives the bid from Lampert - or a similar one from another firm - it could be broken up by liquidators next month.

Most of the 80 stores will shut down by late March. The Columbus store is not on the Sears Holdings list of those to be closed.

The company also has a lot riding on its holiday season sales, which Sears indicated are not going as well as it had hoped.

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