Sears CEO offers to buy Kenmore brand

FILE -- An exterior photograph of a Sears store in Vernon Hills, Illinois.

Sears’ CEO and majority owner Eddie Lampert is offering to buy the Kenmore brand and some other assets from the troubled retailer.

Lampert’s offer letter to the company he controls says he’s making the offer because the company hasn’t been able to find another buyer for the assets in the two years they have been on the market.

“Kenmore is an iconic brand with substantial value, and Sears should aggressively pursue a divestiture of all, or a portion of, Kenmore in the near term,” said the offer letter. “Pursuing these divestitures now will demonstrate the value of Sears’ portfolio of assets, will provide an important source of liquidity to Sears and could avoid any deterioration in the value of such assets.”

The offer is from ESL Investment, the hedge fund owned by Lampert that holds more than 70% of the shares of Sears Holdings.

Sears has been struggling for years, losing $10.8 billion since 2010, its last profitable year. It defaulted on some of its debt earlier this year when it got lenders to accept an extended repayment schedule.