“We have and always will be in the relationship business — that focus remains.”
Recapping last year’s “fighting like hell” transformation efforts, Lampert noted that the company has taken significant actions to unlock the earnings potential of Sears’ assets. One example he gave was the sale of Craftsman, for what “should ultimately be more than $900 million, while preserving our ability to sell Craftsman products.”
He said the company has been focusing on our “Best Members, Best Categories and Best Stores.” Lampert also acknowledged that the steps taken so far “are not enough. We’re still not where we need to be…So, what’s next?”
According to the chairman’s blog: “The reality is transformation is an ongoing process and we are not done. I still firmly believe that together, we can transform this company.”
And Lampert emphasized, “I’m invested in Sears Holdings — in every sense of the word.”
He went on to note the commitment of store associates, and the value of the company’s brands and services. The ceo noted the company’s unique mix of assets that provide value and convenience, at scale across the U.S., and how those factors are “differentiators” when talking about the “power of Sears.” But he also pointed out there’s still more actions to be taken to right-size the company, as well as increase the liquidity and capital needed to get the “runway and flexibility we need.”
Lampert said he will be announcing another partnership — Sears is already selling its Kenmore appliances and DieHard products at Amazon — at the annual meeting, as well as providing a preview of 2018 and beyond.