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Available Expert - Sears Canada reveals it's struggling

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Queen’s University marketing expert Ken Wong is available to comment on Sears Canada warning investors that the company has significant doubt it can continue without restructuring its business or seeking a buyer.

“The casualties of the revolution in and evolution of retailing cannot be stopped,” says Professor Wong. “Retailers today must offer either a lower price or justify their higher price by providing unique services, products or experiences that facilitate an ‘emotional bond’ with the customer. Note that the bond without the substance behind the bond is not enough…witness Eatons, Birks and, in the United States, firms like Montgomery Wards.

“This isn’t the first and it won’t be the last. There are many factors at play: economic uncertainty creating a focus on price; the emergence of ecommerce; the trendiness of belonging to the ‘frugal chic’ and, to be sure, some questionable management calls. Sears could accept a loss for a period of time…and the rising value of real estate may have extended that time period (due to their real estate holdings before yielding to the inevitable.”

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