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Thursday, February 23, 2012

More store closings...

(Photo from the New Ulm Journal) One of the Kmart stores to be shuttered, this one in Minnesota.
Continuing the recurrent theme for the past, oh, decade... declining store sales and more store closings. Another 13 or so Kmarts and 14 or so Sears since the new year (note that at the bottom of the list are 11 stores being closed but listed under sales to General Property; these 11 stores were sold for $270 million)
And in perhaps a sign of desperation for cash, some financial scheming with spinning off Sears Hometown (the mostly rural/small town appliance and tool stores that were typically 5-10k sq ft, smaller than most drug stores) and Sears Outlet to raise some money.

Finally, all of The Great Indoor stores will be closed - locations currently remain in Chandler and Scottsdale, Ariz.; Lone Tree, Colo.; Lombard, Ill.; Gaithersburg, Md.; Novi, Mich.; Columbus, Ohio; Farmers Branch and Houston, Texas. These large indoor stores were first opened in 1998 with plans originally for 200 of them, but only around 10% of that number were ever opened.

And to conclude, the usual decreases in same store sales and total revenue. For the quarter, Kmart comps were down 2.7% and for the year down 1.4%, with SHLD revenue for the year down $1.1 billion. Is bankruptcy/liquidation possible in the future?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Bowling Green KY Big Kmart

Big Kmart 
Store #3646
2945 Scottsville Rd
Bowling Green, KY 42104

This 86,583 square foot Kmart is part of a typical suburban shopping center next to a regional mall with easy access to an interstate. The center was probably built in 1988, and parts of the store seem like it hasn't been remodeled since then. 
Multiple traffic signals into the shopping plaza, a fairly standard mix of a grocery store, restaurants, and your typical lower to middle class suburban shops.

The late 1980's / early 1990's Big Kmart design

Pallets of garden center supplies stored in the parking lot

The garden center entrance with a typical 1990's Big Kmart  curved awning

Advertising alcohol on the front door is a poor decision... makes the store seems like a glorified convenience mart. Although, for most people, Kmart probably is...

Looking right from the entrance

The view from the main entrance

Sears Holdings pathetic attempt to leverage Sears / Kenmore appliance strength in Kmart locations... even if someone wanted to buy a random fridge it seemed unclear how to actually do so from this location.

The standard "walled-in" electronics section

Olan Mills portrait studio in the rear - how do so many of those survive?

View of the inventory storage / employee back room

Another view of the side inventory room
Worms! That's not found in a big city store.

The pharmacy has some original signage up - pretty neat!

Speculating that the original store had more than 6-7 cashier lanes, but as with most Kmart locations, as business slowed seasonal and other merchandise filled in some of the removed lanes' space.

One of the main entrance doors was out of order - not a very good first impression.

Looks like the original pharmacy sign still stands on the exterior.

That's all for this month, folks!

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