Lands’ End is breaking up with Sears for Amazon

“We’re not in their long-term plans, and they’re not in ours,” said Lands’ End CEO about Sears
May 12, 2019 04:00PM

(Credit: iStock)

Lands’ End is reducing its physical presence and reinforcing its efforts to sell clothing in the virtual world.

The casual apparel retailer is closing its retail spaces inside Sears stores and has started selling some products online through Amazon, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Wisconsin-based Lands’ End is preparing to close its last 40 retail locations inside Sears stores, down from 174 about a year ago. “We’re not in their long-term plans, and they’re not in ours,” Lands’ End CEO Jerome Griffith told the outlet.

Sears acquired Lands’ End for $1.9 billion in 2002, then spun off the apparel retailer as an independent company in 2014, which brought Sears a cash dividend of $500 million and recurring lease income from Lands’ End locations embedded in Sears stores. But little overlap between Sears customers and Lands’ End customers hobbled efforts by each retailer from benefit from the traffic of the other at co-locations, according to Griffith.

The largest shareholder of Lands’ End remains investor Edward Lampert, who bought Sears out of bankruptcy this year and previously served as Sears’ chief executive officer.

Online and catalog sales still comprise most of the revenue for Lands’ End with only 8.4 percent of its revenue last year coming from stores, including locations inside Sears. [Chicago Tribune] – Mike Seemuth