By Howard Packowitz
BLOOMINGTON – Sears Department Store is closing this fall at Bloomington’s Eastland Mall. It’s one of 46 unprofitable stores nationwide to shut its doors in November, according to a statement released Wednesday by parent company Sears Holdings.
The company said Sears Auto Center, also at Eastland Mall, will close before the end of this month.
Sears is struggling to survive as consumers prefer to do their shopping online. The same trend has caused other retailers to go out of business. Eastland Mall is down to a single anchor, that being Kohl’s Department Store.
Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner said helping “reinvent” Eastland Mall is one of his top priorities.
Sears said the latest closings are part of the company’s ongoing efforts to streamline operations, strengthen its capital position, and focus on its best performing stores. Peoria’s Sears store will remain open.
The company will continue to evaluate the performance of existing stores, which it said is a critical component to the firm’s retail transformation.
Liquidation sales are set to begin as early as August 30, according to Sears. The company said eligible employees will receive severance and have the opportunity to apply for open positions at other Sears Holdings stores, which include Kmart.
Howard Packowitz can be reached at email@example.com