Dunn Sears Staying Open

Mall stores to close in Raleigh, Fayetteville, Goldsboro

Officials at the Dunn Sears store say a pending bankruptcy of the national company will not shutter the business in Dunn. The store is privately owned.

Shoppers who have grown accustomed to the quality and service of their local hometown Sears store can expect that tradition to continue in Dunn despite a bankruptcy of the national company that is resulting in store closures around the country.

Sears Holdings filed bankruptcy last week after a large debt payment became due and the company was unable to make the payment. Along with the announcement came the release of plans to close 142 stores nationwide. That includes several stores in North Carolina.

The Dunn store will not be included on the list of stores being closed. The Dunn store is privately owned and still operational.

“We are completely separate and it is business as usual for us,” local owner Shelton Rogers said. “We are happy with how things are going.”

Sears plans to close stores locally in Raleigh, Goldsboro and Fayetteville. Liquidation sales should start shortly, company officials have said.

Sears, which also owns Kmart stores, has seen declines in recent years largely because of the rise of online retailers like Amazon. There has also been a national trend away from traditional mall stores, with shoppers preferring large retailers such as Walmart.

The store in Dunn continues to offer an extensive line of appliances, sporting goods, tools and consumer electronics. The store carries iconic Sears names including Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard as well as an assortment of national brands. The craftsman brand was sold to Stanley Black & Decker and is sold at Lowes. Sears has said it is looking for a buyer for Kenmore.

For Kmart, known for its one-time “blue-light specials,’’ catchy jingles, and collections created by celebrities, the case marks a second brush with death. Kmart merged with Sears in 2005 after surviving bankruptcy once before.

Sears Holdings will close another 142 stores by about the end of the year, on top of a recently announced round of 46 store closures, as part of the bankruptcy. The company has 687 stores and about 68,000 employees.

-Dunn Daily Record