Sears Lawsuit Alleges Store Sales to Benefit CEO
A shareholder class-action lawsuit has been filed against Sears Holdings alleging the company's plan to sell its prime real estate holdings to a trust controlled by CEO Eddie Lampert would strip the struggling retailer of one of its last remaining valuable assets, leaving it a debt-laden, money-losing renter in its own stores.
The proposed $2.5 billion sale, the suit says, will benefit Lampert at the expense of shareholders and hasten the demise of Sears, once a quintessential American retailer.
"The proposed transaction is a financially and structurally unfair deal," the lawsuit says. "Sears and its stockholders would receive a severely inadequate cash payment that the defendant Lampert-controlled company may use to cover operating losses and debt obligations for another year or so, before stockholders are left holding the bag in an insolvency widely viewed as inevitable if the proposed transaction occurs."