36-year-old Kmart store in Rancho Cordova to close in mid-December

A Kmart store that has been operating in Rancho Cordova for 36 years will close its doors in mid-December.

Officials of Illinois-based Sears Holdings Corp., owner of Kmart, said the store at 2344 Sunrise Blvd. began a liquidation sale Sept. 29. They said the lease for the store, opened in March 1977, was not renewed.

The closure was among a handful recently announced by Sears Holdings that included the announced closure of a 43-year-old Kmart in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The Rancho Cordova Kmart closing was the only one designated in Northern California.

In an email sent to The Bee on Wednesday, Sears spokesman Howard Riefs said “the store closures are part of a series of actions we’re taking to reduce ongoing expenses, adjust our asset base and accelerate the transformation of our business model.

“These actions will better enable us to focus our investments on serving our customers and members through integrated retail – at the store, online and in the home,” Riefs said.

Riefs said the Rancho Cordova store’s 97 workers will have the opportunity to apply for positions at other Kmart and Sears stores.

Kmart was founded in 1962 as a retailer of affordable general merchandise and quickly expanded to become a national. Kmart Holdings Corp. purchased Sears, its longtime primary competitor, in 2005, forming the new Sears Holdings Corp.

The 2005 purchase initially was hailed as a possible boost to both chains, but the recession prompted a series of belt-tightening moves that continue to this day.

Just last week, Sears Holdings borrowed $1 billion under a new senior secured loan to help it pay debts. The new loan comes due in June 2018.

In its most recent quarter ended Aug. 3, Sears Holdings reported a net loss of $194 million. That came on top of losses $279 million, $489 million and $498 million in the three previous quarters.

Sears Holdings, based in Hoffman Estates, Ill., runs nearly 2,500 Sears and Kmart retail stores in North America and employs about 275,000 companywide.