New Strategies, Leadership at Sears

Sears Holdings is restructuring its Sears and Kmart businesses along key product category lines. Going forward, the company will be organized around five core operating business units, including consumer electronics, major appliances, and apparel.Each

April 6, 2018

Each of the units will be assisted by support units that provide operational and administrative functions, such as marketing, store operations, customer strategy, and finance.

Sears said its president and chief executive, Aylwin B. Lewis, will step down at the end of the week as the retailer undergoes these changes. Lewis will also step down from the retailer's board, and will be succeeded on an interim basis by W. Bruce Johnson, executive vice president of supply chain and operations.

“We are entering a new phase in Sears’ evolution as a multichannel retailer ... and the board has determined that now is the right time to put in place new leadership to take the company forward,” says chairman Eddie Lampert.

In addition, separate brand units will be responsible for growing the value of Sears Holdings’ brand portfolio, while a real-estate business unit and an online business unit will focus on increasing the sales productivity of the company’s physical and virtual real estate.

Each business unit

will have a designated leader and an advisory group comprised of senior Sears Holdings executives who will provide direction and oversee the business unit’s performance, the company said. The leadership of each unit will have a separate, internal profit-and-loss statement to allow greater focus on managing the profitability of the unit, and rapid decision-making to capitalize on opportunities and mitigate risks.

The changes, which will be implemented in phases, were designed to simplify the way the retailer’s business lines are managed and to create “greater autonomy and focus for the business unit management teams,” Sears said.

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