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Sears store at Capital City Mall, two local Kmarts closing

Struggling company shedding more stores across the country

With a New Year comes a fresh set of store closings for struggling retailers Sears and Kmart, including shuttering of the Sears anchor store at the Capital City Mall in Cumberland County and two local Kmart stores.

Sears Holdings Corp., the owner of Sears and Kmart stores, as well as popular brands such as Craftsman, Kenmore and DieHard, plans to close 42 Sears stores and 108 Kmart stores by the spring, a corporate spokesman confirmed this afternoon.

The Capital City Mall Sears store will close by mid-February. The company also is closing Kmart stores on the Carlisle Pike in Hampden Township and Fruitville Pike in Manheim Township.

The Cumberland County Kmart will close by mid-February, while the Lancaster County store will close by the end of March, according to the company.

Liquidation sales at all closing stores will begin Friday, according to the company.

Here’s the full list of closings. Some internal store announcements were made today, while others were made last week.

“The decision to close stores is a difficult but necessary step as we take actions to strengthen the company’s operations and fund its transformation,” the company said in a statement. “Many of these stores have struggled with their financial performance for years and we have kept them open to maintain local jobs and in the hopes that they would turn around. But in order to meet our objective of returning to profitability, we have to make tough decisions and will continue to do so, which will give our better performing stores a chance at success.”

Over the past week, several media outlets have been reporting on planned Sears store closings around the country. A Business Insider report last week said that many of the stores being closed by Sears would start liquidation sales on Jan. 6.

Sears Holdings had about 3,500 stores in 2011, but that number has been scaled down to fewer than 1,500 as the company has struggled to maintain profitability and compete with increased online retailers.

The Capital City Mall store is 101,000 square feet.

The Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust, or PREIT, released a statement about Sears, which will impact three of its portfolio properties. CEO Joseph Coradino said PREIT is being proactive to replace Sears in each case.

PREIT is in the process of finalizing lease documents with unnamed replacement tenants, including for the Capital City Mall space.

The publicly-traded mall owner has been reducing its exposure to Sears and Kmart stores in recent years.

Construction is underway in Scranton to replace a former Sears with a Dick’s Sporting Goods, Field & Stream and HomeGoods. In Chester County, construction continues on a Whole Foods to replace a former Kmart.

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