Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of Sears Holdings Corp. (NASDAQOTH:SHLDQ) soared 34% early Friday after the beleaguered retailer announced in an SEC filing it is exploring the possibility of creating a real estate investment trust to raise cash.
So what: Specifically, the filing says 200-300 stores would be monetized through a sales-leaseback transaction. Sears would continue to operate in those stores, which would be sold to a newly formed REIT. Without offering specifics, Sears states such a sale would result in "substantial proceeds" to the company and enhance liquidity.
Now what: For perspective, however, Sears did note the purchase price it received last month for selling its full-line store in Cupertino, California was $102.5 million. Of course, that's not necessarily indicative of the individual value of each of the 200-300 stores referenced above, but does lend credence to last year's reports that Sears' top 350 owned and 50 leased properties were worth at least $7.3 billion. Considering Sears' entire market capitalization still sits below $5 billion as of this writing, it's hard to blame the market for bidding up shares today.
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