Sears stores across the country closed permanently on Sunday night.
The saga of the Sears bankruptcy has been making headlines for over a year now.
For many consumers, this includes the store responsible for the maintenance of their appliances. Their home maintenance service was one of the jewels of the company during its glory years. However, the extended warranties purchased from Sears are no longer valid since October 18.
And for many people, especially those who lived in remote areas of major centers, it was “the catalog store.” In the past, thanks to its remote controls, the Christmas catalog made children dream .
It is perhaps also surprising that a store that had its best years thanks to remote controls could not adapt to the expansion of online business, according to Jean-François Ouellet, professor Associate at HEC Montréal.
It’s a little paradoxical because Sears was the historic champion of remote, phone and catalog orders … It would have been natural for Sears to migrate to online commerce, but it’s a change that she did not do it fast enough.
Jean-François Ouellet, Associate Professor at HEC Montréal
Mr. Ouellet is not the only one to believe that Sears was a victim of online commerce. This is also the opinion of Jean-Claude Poitras , a marketing professor at the New Brunswick Community College in Dieppe (NBCC).
It was not until 2012 that Sears announced it had implemented a strategy to improve its online presence.
Less than two years later, Sears Canada’s parent company announced that more than 1,600 positions were abolished .
Then, in June 2017, Sears Canada was sheltered from its creditors .
Sears employees have been the hardest hit by the closure of stores across the country. In July, some employees claimed that Sears had stopped meeting its commitments to them .
The news that the company’s managers had paid generous bonuses despite the layoff of thousands of employees had also outraged part of the population, leading to a boycott campaign of the company.
In October, a former 100-year-old employee of the company lost her benefits because of the bankruptcy of the retail giant. Lisa Okill, a resident of Moncton, New Brunswick, lost her life insurance and sickness benefit program .
And in the end, even the management of liquidation sales had angered consumers. For example, a mother in Ontario had noticed in October that some of the liquidation prices, posted with stickers, were higher than the original prices found under the stickers.
In total, nearly 12,000 people from coast to coast will have lost their jobs.
Sears stores have been present in Canada since 1953.