Two local Sears Outlet stores could be part of spinoff buy back

Sears Holdings chairman Eddie Lampert wants to buy Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, a company Sears previously spun off from the department store giant.

After emerging from bankruptcy at a fraction of the stores Sears once operated, and no stores in the Miami Valley, Sears is now looking to pull Sears Hometown and Outlet stores back into its portfolio, according to a letter from Lampert’s hedge fund ESL Investments to Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc.

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Lampert is the largest shareholder in Sears Hometown and Outlet stores but wants full ownership of the Illinois-based company that was sold off in 2012.

Lampert offered to pay $2.25 per share in cash, a 23.6 percent premium to the average price for the five trading days leading up to April 5, Lampert said in the letter.

“We believe our proposal, which will provide certain value and liquidity at a considerable premium to the market price, presents a superior outcome for the Company’s stockholders as compared to the uncertain outcomes facing the Company if it continues on its current path as a stand-alone company,” Lampert said.

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ESL’s bid could only proceed if the full board of directors and the company approves it.

A committee for Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores “concluded that a transaction on the terms contemplated by the Proposal would not be in the best interests of the Company’s unaffiliated stockholders,” said an announcement Monday from Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc.

But the groups involved are continuing discussions, the statement said.

There are Sears Outlet stores at the Kettering Towne Center and North Heights Plaza in Huber Heights.


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