Real Estate and Retail

Big-box retailer closing locations

September 21, 2016
| By Pat Evans |
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Kmart departments interior
Kmart, a subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corporation, opened its first store in 1962 in Garden City, Michigan. Photo via

Two West Michigan locations of a national big-box retailer will close their doors this winter.

Kmart will close locations in Grand Rapids, at 4111 N. Kent Mall NE, and Byron Center, at 701 68th St., in mid December, according to Howard Riefs, director of corporate communications at Kmart, a subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corporation.

The stores will begin liquidation sales on Thursday.

The number of employees who will be let go due to the closings is not publicly available, but Riefs said they will be eligible for severance and can apply to other Kmart or Sears jobs.

Kmart also expects to close Michigan locations in Jackson, Manistee, Sault Saint Marie, Alpena and Fenton.


Riefs said in an email to the Business Journal the decision has been made to close unprofitable stores.

“We have been strategically and aggressively evaluating our store space and productivity,” he said.

National media outlets have reported there are 64 Kmart stores associated with this wave of closures. Sears Holdings Corporation also announced the closing of nearly 80 Kmart stores in April.

Kmart has seen sales drop from $37 billion in 2000 to $10 billion in 2015, according to a Moody’s report.

Moving forward

Kmart has stores in West Michigan that will remain open, including locations in Battle Creek, Greenville, Hastings, Marshall and Muskegon.

Riefs also said customers can continue to use the retailer’s Shop Your Way platform, which uses the company’s websites and mobile apps for shopping.

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