When 2019 came to a close, it seemed possible that it might have been the final holiday season for Kmart. The one-time discounting powerhouse had been continuously closing locations over the past several years. The retailer seemed like it was running out of stores to close and had abandoned its presence in most major metropolitan markets. But to the surprise of skeptics, a handful of Kmart locations have remained in operation and have started stocking shelves with holiday-themed merchandise.
Kmart survived the entire month of August without initiating any additional store closures. Approximately only three dozen Kmart stores, located throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and Guam are currently in operation. Twenty years ago, there were over 2,100 locations.
The fact that Kmart is even alive, in any bricks-and-mortar format, defies the company’s precarious financial condition. Last September, Neil Saunders of GlobalData Retail told CNN Business that Kmart was a “tired” brand that “has little to offer.” Saunders suggested that the company is “on a journey where the ultimate destination is failure.”Forbes