Department store chain Sears won a reprieve from liquidating Friday after its chairman, Eddie Lampert, submitted a $4.4 billion bid in an effort to buy the retailer and keep it alive.
Lampert’s hedge fund, ESL Investments, put forward the tentative proposal for the parent of Kmart and Sears earlier this month, with his formal submission due today. The offer came just in time to meet the 4:00 p.m. deadline, CNBC first reported.
Friday’s offer, which Lampert submitted through an ESL affiliate, Transform Holdco, is for 425 of Sears’ stores. To fund the bid, it has a $1.3 billion financing commitment from investment banks, a spokesperson for ESL in a Friday statement.
The bid would “offer employment to up to 50,000 associates,” the spokesperson for ESL said, cautioning, though, that it would depend on “further actions the company may take between now and closing.” It would also reinstate severance protections for “eligible employees.”