NEW YORK — Sears was once the place where families could go for an afternoon of one-stop shopping for everything from clothing to appliances to car parts. But it has struggled in recent years amid declining sales and stiff competition.
Now, Sears, which runs 2,500 Kmart and Sears stores, is considering separating its Lands’ End catalog business and Sears Auto Center businesses from the rest of the company. The retailer also plans to continue closing some of its unprofitable stores and is selling some store leases in Canada.
The announcements came Tuesday as Sears warned that it expects a loss of $582 million in the third quarter on another drop in sales. The company said that for the 12 weeks that ended Saturday its sales at stores open at least a year fell 3.7 percent. Sears shares closed up $6.53, or nearly 12 percent, at $62.09.
Sears said it is likely to pursue a spinoff of Lands’ End, which it bought in 2002, to shareholders and not an outright sale.
Sears also said it’s repositioning Sears Auto Center around services other than tires and is evaluating strategic options for the business. Additionally, Sears anticipates closing unprofitable stores, including locations where leases will expire soon.