Reader question: I drove down College yesterday and noticed construction going on in Grand Chute at the old Circuit City location. Do you know what is going in there?
Answer: Yes, it’s Sears Outlet.
I first wrote about this incoming store in early May, but with work underway it’s a good time for an update.
Sears Outlet leased the space at 4635 W. College Ave. and its executives expect to open the store in the last week of August.
The outside signage was removed and the building’s exterior was updated with new colors. Work is going on inside right now to fix up the 45,000-square-foot space that’s been vacant since March 2009 when the Circuit City chain was liquidated under bankruptcy.
Sears Outlet is not part of the parent company that owns Sears, though its offices are located in a separate wing of the Sears headquarters in Hoffman Estates, IL.
“It was a part of Sears Holdings until October,” said Rohit Jacob, divisional vice president of new store development of Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores. “It was spun off as its own entity and is listed on the Nasdaq. There are four formats. It has Hometown stores, which are dealer-owned and operated in smaller towns. It has the appliance showroom concept, a hardware store concept and the outlet store concept.”
The four formats have a total of 1,200 stores, including 125 Sears Outlets.
Inside the future Sears Outlet store, shoppers will find a selection of goods based on value.
“Our main categories in Appleton are appliances, lawn and garden, apparel and a lot of crazy deals, as we call them,” Jacob said. “We won’t have electronics. We might get have coffeemakers, for example, if we get a good deal on them. We might have tool storage.”
He said products come from overstock or refurbished goods, including name brands. They purchase their products from Sears and other sources. See more at www.searsoutlet.com.
— Maureen Wallenfang: 920-993-1000, ext. 287, or firstname.lastname@example.org; on Twitter @wallenfang