In its peak, Kmart had 134 locations in Michigan. Now the fallen retailer is down to just one.
Two of the three remaining Kmart stores in the state, located in Warren and Waterford, will close their doors, the company announced Thursday.
The two Detroit subway closures are part of a larger list of 96 Kmart and Sears stores that will shut down nationwide. The cuts are an attempt by the company, also known as Transformco, to keep the two retailers on board after acquiring Sears Holdings assets in February. In a news release, Transformco stated that they were "facing a difficult retail environment and other challenges" from the moment of acquisition and that to be successful, they were "trimming struggling operations."
Kmart, announced earlier in September, plans to close nearly 100 stores in December or earlier, including eight in Michigan: Belleville, Clio, Grayling, Hastings, Menominee, Midland, Oscoda and Marine City.
According to the Macomb Daily, Warren Kmart, located 2000 East Road 10 miles away, will close by the end of the year. The Waterford store, located at 5100 Dixie Highway, will close by February next year. In addition, Sears in Lansing is set to close at this time.
Closers are leaving a remaining Kmart store in Michigan, Marshall, located at 15861 Michigan Ave.
Kenya Travis of Madison Heights loads a folding table in her car after buying it from Kmart in Warren in 2017 (Photo: Junfu Han, Detroit Free Press)
"We will strive to create and deliver value through a strategic mix of our better performing retail stores and our service businesses, brands and other assets and we expect to generate significant returns on our extensive portfolio of property These assets include Innovel, which provides logistics solutions for businesses and consumers, Sears Home Services, as well as Shop Your Way and financial services, as well as our Kenmore and DieHard brands. These businesses will also benefit from the recent acquisition of Sears Hometown's Transformco affiliate – a network of more than 400 smaller and smaller independent stores known for offering their customers a range of home-made products, including appliances, lawn and garden, tools and sports goods. "
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"Members can use the store locator feature on our website to find their location from their nearest Kmart and Sears stores. We also encourage members to shop at Sears.com and Kmart.com. "
After this latest round of closures, Transformco will manage 182 Kmart and Sears stores in USA. Only one Kmart in the US state will remain open: a Marshall store outside Battle Creek.
The Kmart chain started 57 years ago as the big box brand of the Detroit-based S.S. Kresge Co. She was one of the largest employers in Southeastern Michigan for decades and the second largest retailer in the country. The former headquarters of the company was in Troy, with nearly 5,000 people working there at their peak.
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