January 28, 2021

Kmart closing 110 stores> No Maine facilities are in jeopardy

TROY, Mich. — Attention Kmart shoppers!

Kmart Corp. will close 110 stores, eliminate 6,000 jobs and trim its management ranks by 10 percent as it struggles to strengthen its place in the fiercely competitive world of discount retailing.

“Kmart conducted an assessment of our core discount stores to identify which stores were not meeting our return-on-investment requirements,” Chairman Joseph Antonini said in an announcement broadcast to its discount stores nationwide this morning.

“Going forward with our renewal, we will insist that our stores fully meet our return-on-investment requirements,” Antonini said.

The stores — 4.7 percent of Kmart’s 2,350 discount stores nationwide — are in 30 states and will be closed by February 1995. Three stores in Massachusetts — two in Springfield and one in Seekonk — are the only ones in New England scheduled to close.

The company said it will eliminate the jobs of 650 store managers over the next two years.

Earlier this year, Kmart said it would close 150 stores over a six-year period that began in 1990. Eight stores have been closed so far this year, said spokeswoman Shawn Kahle. The company has not said how many stores were closed in the four years before that announcement.

The retailer has made store renovation a top priority in efforts to boost sales and fight off competition from Wal-Mart and other rivals.

Kmart previously announced it would transform 70 aging discount stores into modern Super Kmart Centers.

To help fund its massive renovation program, Kmart recently sold its stake in Coles Myer, an Australian retail conglomerate, and announced public offerings of major stakes in its OfficeMax and Sports Authority specialty retail divisions.

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