Sears Holdings Corp. announced the closing of 72 Sears and Kmart locations across the country following the release of their first quarter 2018 financial results, and two of those 72 locations being closed are located in Duluth.

WDIO is reporting that both the Kmart in West Duluth's Spirit Valley Shopping Center and the Sears located at the Miller Hill Mall will both be closing later this year. The schedule for the facility closures is as follows:

  • Sears Auto Center (adjacent to Miller Hill Mall Sears) - Closing in late June
  • Kmart in West Duluth - Closing in early September
  • Sears at the Miller Hill Mall - Closing in early September

Employees at these locations were told of the plans to close on Thursday, with eligible associates receiving a severance.

The closing of the Kmart in West Duluth eliminates an easily accessible shopping location for many in that area of town, and also marks the compete departure of the brand from the Twin Ports, following the previous closures of locations in Superior and near Miller Hill Mall.

With Sears closing at the Miller Hill Mall, that leaves a second large vacancy in the mall. In April of this year, it was announced that Younkers would also be closing. This leaves JC Penney (who has also been dealing with financial issues over the years) and Dick's Sporting Goods as the remaining large anchor retail destinations within the mall.

The announcement of the closing of the Duluth Kmart and Sears, along with the 70 other locations, comes after Sears Holdings Corp. posted first quarter 2018 financial losses and continues to see sales numbers decreasing across the country. The company identified 100 non-profitable stores as part of an assessment, making the decision to close many of those on the list. Beside the Duluth Kmart and Sears, the only other location in Minnesota or Wisconsin closing is the Sears in Brooklyn Center, MN.