Sears Holdings Corp., the retailer controlled by Edward Lampert, is “open” to selling assets as it works to turn itself around, its chief executive said.
“If there are assets that make sense to be brought in to the portfolio, we are open to that discussion as well,” Lou D’Ambrosio said in a Bloomberg Television interview.
Sears posted first-quarter profit of $189 million last month after spinning off smaller format stores and selling some locations, and following a $3.1 billion loss last year. It also has announced plans to spin off part of its Canada business. The asset sales and declining revenue since Lampert merged Sears and Kmart in 2005 have prompted speculation that he’s in the process of breaking up or liquidating the company.
“If that is the case, nobody has shared that with me,” D’Ambrosio said. “We have an asset-rich portfolio. We are evaluating whether assets are more valuable inside or outside the portfolio.”
D’Ambrosio led a walk through a redesigned store near the company’s Hoffman Estates, Illinois headquarters, highlighting new mannequins by the entrance and a fitness department that has doubled in size. Sears is the top seller of fitness equipment, he said.
The retailer, whose Craftsman tool and Kenmore appliances are leading brands, recently reported increases in clothing sales after years of declines. Its Kardashian clothing line, introduced last year, is attracting new customers of various ages, D’Ambrosio said.
Sears fell 1.3 percent to $49.98 at 9:32 a.m. in New York. The shares had gained 59 percent this year through Tuesday.
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