Sears to close Kmarts in Richfield, Minnetonka

  • Updated: September 9, 2009 - 12:40 AM

Sears Holdings Corp. will close underperforming Kmart stores in Minnetonka and Richfield that employ more than 100 people.

The 46-employee Minnetonka store, at 17501 Hwy. 7, will close Sept. 20, and the 62-employee Richfield store, at 6501 Lyndale Av. S., will close Nov. 15, said Kim Freely, a spokeswoman at Sears headquarters in Hoffman Estates, Ill.

The two stores are among 22 Kmart and six Sears stores being closed nationwide this fall. The closings follow an $86 million second-quarter loss on revenue of $10.6 billion that Sears Holdings reported last month. In its earnings report, the company identified all 28 stores being closed as "underperforming." None of the other 26 stores being closed is in Minnesota.

The new closings are in addition to the closing of 13 Kmart stores and 11 Sears stores nationwide earlier this year. Following the two rounds of store closings, Sears Holdings will have about 1,300 Kmart stores and about 850 Sears stores, Freely said.

The company's cost-cutting strategy has come under fire. Sears Holdings Corp. Chairman Edward Lampert criticized an August report in Barron's that Sears Holdings' deep cost-cutting had hurt its ability to compete with retail rivals. Lampert called the story inaccurate and biased; Barron's stood by its report.

STEVE ALEXANDER

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