Slumping Sears Ousts CEO

Board dumps Lewis as part of restructuring plan to boost retailer's falling sales, stock
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Jan 28, 2008 9:39 AM CST
Snowblowers are lined up in front of the Sears store in Berlin, Vt., in this Nov. 29, 2007 file photo. Shares of Sears Holdings Corp. tumbled Monday, Jan. 14, 2008, after the retailer warned falling...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – Sears Holdings CEO Aylwin Lewis will depart as part of company-wide restructuring, the Wall Street Journal reports. Sears stock has plummeted 40% since July, and the retailer's sales were down 3.5% this holiday season. The company, which was created when Kmart Holding Corp. took over Sears in 2005, last week announced a plan to decentralize the chain of command, up capital spending by $200 million, and reformat stores.

Sears Chairman Eddie Lampert brought Lewis in as a Kmart VP in 2004, right before the hedge fund manager snapped up Sears. Lewis was appointed head of store operations in 2006, but since then, "the company has been in free-fall," one consultant told Bloomberg. The executive VP of supply chain and operations will fill in until Sears finds a permanent replacement.