Sears Hometown Opens Stores Within Other Stores

Image courtesy of Mark Clifton

Sears and JCPenney are two department stores with more space than they need and a need to get more people in the door. They’ve started opening stores within stores, or subdividing their space and leasing part of it to other retailers. Now a member of the Sears family that has gone off on its own is trying this strategy to get a retail foothold: Sears Hometown is opening a store in an Ace Hardware.

Sears Hometown isn’t the same as Sears. Along with the company’s outlet stores, they were spun off into a separate, publicly-traded company back in 2012. Stores are actually owned by local franchisees, which led to some interesting confrontations when those franchisees didn’t want to be open on Thanksgiving Day when they were supposed to be.

Sears Hometown stores are usually in smaller cities and stores, and sell home goods that inlcude the famous house brands associated with Sears, like Craftsman and Kenmore. Two new Hometown stores that have opened recently are in interesting locations: one in California is inside an Ace Hardware, and another in Maine is inside a rent-to-own store.

The end result is something like a mini-Lowe’s or Home Depot for Selma, CA. “With the store-within-a-store format offered by Sears Hometown Stores, we can add onto our existing business and truly provide a one-stop-shop for home improvement needs,” the owner of the new franchise explained in a statement.

(via Chain Store Age)

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