Tyrone Sears closing; company facing financial difficulties

(WFLA) – It stood as a beacon of retail for multiple generations. But now, the Tyrone Square Sears store is discounting inventory.

Come late January, it will close and be torn down. This will be the store’s last holiday season.

A current Sears employee, who didn’t want to be identified, said the store is like a family. “I remember when they built it. So I’ve lived here on and off for decades and we were all raised in Sears,” the employee said.

The employee said news of the Tyrone Sears closing isn’t coming as a shock. “It’s sad but it’s kind of inevitable at this point. We’ve been thinking about it a long time, so it will be interesting to see how it coincides with Christmas,” she said.

Sears is closing stores throughout the country. A spokesman denied the Tyrone store is part of the mix. That store was previously sold to another company who is tearing it down. Sears said it’s not part of an effort to remain financially viable.

“We are absolutely focused on restoring Sears’ holdings to profitability. We are an asset-rich enterprise with multiple resources at our disposal,” Howard Reifs said.

Customers are disappointed to the Tyrone store go. “It is part of the family. My mother still buys everything. She’s a Kenmore, she’s die hard … It has to be Kenmore,” Tina Samuel said.

Many years ago Hank Goettelman was a catalog sales department head at this store. “It’s sad. But ya know, the last couple of times we’ve been in there, there’s like maybe six people in the entire store. I guess everybody’s going to Walmart or shopping online,” Goettelman said.

Sears is in a rough spot. Ratings companies believe bankruptcy is almost certain for the company in the next one or two years. Some suppliers are limiting deliveries, fearing they won’t get paid.

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