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Kmart, 5141 Douglas Avenue in Caledonia, has been sold to Brookfield-based Zales Discount LLC for about $2 million.
No official announcements have been made to close that location. Village officials fear that could happen with the company on shaky ground. But Racine County Eye reached out to the manager of the store who said the sale just means they are getting a new landlord.
“We’re not going anywhere. We’ve gone through three different landlords,” he said.
Hesham Elghannam, a medical doctor for Aurora Healthcare, owns Zales Discount. He bought the building last week from Oak Brook Illinois-based IRC Greentree LLC.
Caledonia Village Administrator Tom Christensen said the village was made aware of the sale, but he didn’t know when the closing was expected to happen. Elghannam met with Jim Dobbs, the village president, to discuss his intentions.
Kmart is on shaky ground, according to media reports.
“The word we got was that the buyer is interested in keeping Kmart at that location and he’s willing to do what it takes to help Kmart if they are willing to stay,” Christensen said.
But if the retailer leaves, the buyer indicated that he is committed to having a retail business at that location.
“We are delighted to have a buyer with that kind of attitude,” Christensen said.
But the village is preparing for the worst, Christensen said.
“It will be a shame if they leave. They’ve been neighbors over the years. But the hand-writing is on the wall.”
Sears Holdings, which owns Kmart, closed a total of 400 stores in 2017, including the Racine Kmart site at 2211 S. Green Bay Road. It also plans to close another 166 Kmart and Sears stores by the end of April, according to BusinessInsider.com
According to the story:
“In December, analysts speculated that Kmart could be in danger of shutting down entirely. Kmart faces intense competition from other discount chains and Walmart, and Sears Holdings has closed Kmart stores at a more rapid rate than its namesake stores.”
Calls made to Elghaannam were not returned. However, we will add to this story when we receive more information.