Forty additional Sears stores are set to close in February 2019.

SEARS CREDITOR GROUP: A creditors’ committee has been formed in the Sears Holdings Corp. bankruptcy.

Creditors met on Wednesday to determine who would best represent the constituency group of unsecured creditors. The nine-member committee includes Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., Oswaldo Cruz, Winiadaewoo Electronics America Inc., Apex Tool Group, Computershare Trust Co. NA, The Bank of New York Mellon Trust Co., Basil Vasiliou, Simon Property Group and Brixmor Operating Partnership.

Sears filed its voluntary Chapter 11 petition for bankruptcy court protection on Oct. 15 in White Plains, N.Y. Also filing petitions were 49 affiliates, including Kmart Holding Corp. The petition listed total assets of $6.94 billion and total liabilities of $11.34 billion.

Sears has a commitment of $300 million in debtor-in-possession financing from its senior secured asset-based revolving lenders. It is in the process of negotiating an additional $300 million for a junior DIP facility with ESL Investments. ESL is the hedge fund run by Edward S. Lampert, who is also chairman of Sears. He stepped down as chief executive officer on the day Sears filed its bankruptcy petition. ESL is said to be talking with Cyrus Capital Partners about a contribution to the junior DIP facility.

Sears plans to shutter 142 unprofitable stores by the end of the year, on top of the stores it was already planning to close before it filed its petition.

The retailer operates under the nameplates Sears and Kmart. The company said it plans to exit as a reorganized firm or find a buyer.

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