Sears Holdings Corporation initiated voluntary bankruptcy proceedings on Monday, accelerating its strategic transformation and facilitating its financial restructuring.
The aim is to establish a sustainable capital structure, continuing with its operating model and with long-term profits, the company founded at the end of the 19th century said in a statement.
With the voluntary petition of the procedure of Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code, the company expects a restructuring process as expeditious as possible and with the commitment of reorganization in the nearest term.
The legal mechanism was requested due to its high liabilities and the staff is made up of 89,000 employees, far from the 246,000 employees five years ago.
The procedures include the Sears and Kmart stores, as well as their respective electronic platforms, which will remain open and in operation, the company stated.
However, by the end of the year, 142 stores will be closed, considered to be without benefits, added to the closure of another 46 stores that had already been announced.
The current executive pseudo Edward S. Lampert leaves office immediately, although he remains president of the Board of Directors.
A triumvirate composed of Robert A. Riecker, Leena Munjal and Gregory Ladley will operate in its place, and a restructuring committee was formed, with Mohsin Y. Meghji as head of Restructuring and William L. Transier appointed as independent director.
Just the day before, historian Jerry Hancock told National Public Radio (NPR) that it was a sad story because Sears is an American institution, particularly in the 60’s and 70’s.
He said that for many former employees of the company, the decline began when he moved away from his roots with the working class, a process that began with the period of prosperity of the 50s.
Last Wednesday, when the first press releases were known that they would initiate the procedures of Chapter 11, the shares of Sears fell 32%.