No ‘Doubt’ About It, Sears Only Part Of Retail’s Pain

by MR Magazine Staff

Sears Holdings’ chance of survival is being called into question by none other than the company itself, which now concedes it has “substantial doubt” about sticking around. That recent revelation, made in its annual report, is not unexpected. Sears is a longtime corporate life-support case. But the owner of Sears and Kmart is far from being the only sickly retailer dealing with such deep despair this year. In fact, 2017 is shaping up to be a watershed year for many brand-name retailers. Reeling from weak 2016 holiday sales, established chains such as Macy’s and J.C. Penney are slashing costs and closing stores. RadioShack is among those going the bankruptcy reorganization route. Such industry upheaval and disruption won’t end very soon as store operators scramble to compete against online retail giants, led by Amazon. Chains also are testing new merchandising approaches aimed at attracting a changing customer base led by millennial shoppers.  “This is a real shake-up for bricks-and-mortar stores,” says Bridget Weishaar, a senior equity analyst at Morningstar. Those reverberations are definitely rattling Sears, which in its annual report conceded for the first time that there is “substantial doubt” about its ability to keep going. Read more at Chicago Tribune.