10-K 1 shld201310k.htm 10-K SHLD201310K

 
United States
Securities and Exchange Commission
Washington, D.C. 20549
 
 
 
 
 
FORM 10-K
 
 
 
 
 
x
Annual Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
For the Fiscal Year Ended February 1, 2014
or
o
Transition Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
Commission file number 000-51217
 
 
 
 
 
SEARS HOLDINGS CORPORATION
(Exact Name of Registrant as Specified in Its Charter)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Delaware
 
20-1920798
(State of Incorporation)
 
(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
 
 
3333 Beverly Road, Hoffman Estates, Illinois
 
60179
(Address of principal executive offices)
 
(Zip Code)
Registrant’s Telephone Number, Including Area Code: (847) 286-2500
 
 
 
 
 
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of each class
 
Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered
Common Shares, par value $0.01 per share
 
The NASDAQ Stock Market
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes  x  No  ¨
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes  ¨  No  x
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes  x  No ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files). Yes x No  ¨
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (§229.405 of this chapter) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of the Registrant's knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. x
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer   x  Accelerated filer    ¨   Non-accelerated filer    ¨   Smaller reporting company    ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act). Yes ¨ No x
On March 1, 2014, the registrant had 106,443,237 common shares outstanding. The aggregate market value (based on the closing price of the Registrant's common shares for stocks quoted on the NASDAQ Global Select Market) of the Registrant's common shares owned by non-affiliates (which are assumed, solely for the purpose of this calculation, to be stockholders other than (i) directors and executive officers of the Registrant and (ii) any person known by the Registrant to beneficially own five percent or more of the Registrant's common shares), as of the last business day of the Registrant's most recently completed second fiscal quarter, was approximately $860 million.
Documents Incorporated By Reference
Part III of this Form 10-K incorporates by reference certain information from the Registrant’s definitive proxy statement relating to our Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be held on May 6, 2014 (the “2014 Proxy Statement”), which will be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission within 120 days after the end of the fiscal year to which this Form 10-K relates.
 



PART I
Item  1.
Business
General
Sears Holdings Corporation ("Holdings") is the parent company of Kmart Holding Corporation ("Kmart") and Sears, Roebuck and Co. ("Sears"). Holdings (together with its subsidiaries, "we," "us," "our," or the "Company") was formed as a Delaware corporation in 2004 in connection with the merger of Kmart and Sears (the “Merger”) on March 24, 2005. We are an integrated retailer with significant physical and intangible assets, as well as virtual capabilities enabled through technology. We currently operate a national network of stores with 1,980 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States operating through Kmart and Sears and 449 full-line and specialty retail stores in Canada operating through Sears Canada Inc. ("Sears Canada"), a 51%-owned subsidiary. Further, we operate a number of websites under the sears.com and kmart.com banners which offer more than 110 million products and provide the capability for our members and customers to engage in cross-channel transactions such as free store pickup; buy in store/ship to home; and buy online, return in store. We are also the home of Shop Your WaySM, a free member-based social shopping platform that offers rewards, personalized services and a unique experience. Shop Your Way connects all of the ways members shop - in store, at home, online and by phone. The Company is the leading home appliance retailer as well as a leader in tools, lawn and garden, fitness equipment and automotive repair and maintenance. Key proprietary brands include Kenmore®, Craftsman® and DieHard®. We also maintain a broad apparel and home offering including such well-known labels as Lands' End®, the Kardashian Kollection, Jaclyn Smith, Joe Boxer, Route 66, Cannon, Sandra Lee and Levi's. Additionally, we launched the Adam Levine and Nicki Minaj collections in 500 Kmart stores and on shopyourway.com/kmart.com. We are the nation's largest provider of home services, with more than 13 million service and installation calls made annually.
The retail industry is changing rapidly. The progression of the Internet, mobile technology, social networking and social media is fundamentally reshaping the way we interact with our core customers and members. As a result, we are transitioning to a member-centric company. Our focus continues to be on our core customers, our members, and finding ways to provide them value and convenience through Integrated Retail and our Shop Your Way membership platform. We have invested significantly in our online ecommerce platforms, our membership program and the technology needed to support these initiatives.
Business Segments
During 2013, we operated three reportable segments: Kmart, Sears Domestic and Sears Canada. Financial information, including revenues, operating income (loss), total assets and capital expenditures for each of these business segments is contained in Note 17 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements. Information regarding the components of revenue for Holdings is included in Item 7, "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" as well as Note 17.
Kmart     
At February 1, 2014, the Company operated a total of 1,152 Kmart stores across 49 states, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This store count consists of 1,135 discount stores, averaging 94,000 square feet, and 17 Super Centers, averaging 165,000 square feet. Most Kmart stores are one-floor, free-standing units that carry a wide array of products across many merchandise categories, including consumer electronics, seasonal merchandise, outdoor living, toys, lawn and garden equipment, food and consumables and apparel, including products sold under such well-known labels as Jaclyn Smith, Joe Boxer and Alphaline, and certain proprietary Sears brand products (such as Kenmore, Craftsman, and DieHard) and services. We also offer an assortment of major appliances, including Kenmore-branded products, in virtually all of our locations. There are 840 Kmart stores that also operate in-store pharmacies. The Super Centers generally operate 24 hours a day and combine a full-service grocery along with the merchandise selection of a discount store. There are also 16 Sears Auto Centers operating in Kmart stores. Sears Auto Centers offer a variety of professional automotive repair and maintenance services, as well as a full assortment of automotive accessories. Kmart continues to offer its layaway program, which allows members and customers to cost-effectively finance their purchases both in-store and online. In addition, we have expanded the

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ways our members and customers can receive their purchases, allowing our members and customers to buy online and pick up in store. This service, powered by MyGofer, is now available in over 1,100 Kmart stores via either mygofer.com or kmart.com. Kmart also sells its products through its kmart.com website and provides members and customers the option of buying through a mobile app or online and picking up their merchandise in one of our Kmart stores.
Sears Domestic
At February 1, 2014, Sears Domestic operations consisted of the following:
Full-line Stores—778 stores, of which 768 are Full-line stores located across all 50 states and Puerto Rico. These stores are primarily mall-based locations averaging 136,000 square feet. Full-line stores offer a wide array of products and service offerings across many merchandise categories, including appliances, consumer electronics, tools, sporting goods, outdoor living, lawn and garden equipment, certain automotive services and products, such as tires and batteries, home fashion products, as well as apparel, footwear, jewelry and accessories for the whole family. Our product offerings include our proprietary Kenmore, Craftsman, DieHard, Lands' End, Covington, Apostrophe, and Canyon River Blues brand merchandise, and other brand merchandise such as Alphaline and Roadhandler. In addition, at February 1, 2014, we operated 10 Sears Essentials/Grand stores located in 10 states. These stores are primarily free-standing units averaging 157,000 square feet, offering health and beauty products, pantry goods, household products and toys in addition to the offerings of the typical mall-based store. We also have 696 Sears Auto Centers operating in association with Full-line stores and eight Sears Auto Centers operating out of Sears Essentials/Grand stores. In addition, there are 34 free standing Sears Auto Centers that operate independently of Full-line stores. Sears also extends the availability of its product selection through the use of its sears.com website, which offers an assortment of home, apparel and accessory merchandise and provides members and customers the option of buying through a mobile app or online and picking up their merchandise in one of our Full-line stores. As previously announced, we are considering strategic alternatives for our Sears Auto Center business, subject to board approval and other conditions.
Specialty Stores—50 specialty stores (primarily consisting of the 34 free standing Sears Auto Centers noted above and 13 Lands' End retail stores noted below) located in free-standing, off-mall locations or high-traffic neighborhood shopping centers.
Lands' End—Lands' End, Inc. ("Lands' End") is a leading direct merchant of traditionally styled casual clothing, accessories and footwear for men, women and children, as well as home products and soft luggage. These products are offered through multiple selling channels including landsend.com, one of the leading apparel websites, as well as catalog mailings, and international businesses. Lands' End has 13 retail stores, averaging 9,000 square feet, which offer Lands' End merchandise primarily from catalog and Internet channel overstocks. In addition, Lands' End has 275 “store within a store” departments inside Sears Domestic Full-line locations.
As previously announced, we are pursuing the separation of our Lands' End business through a pro rata distribution to our shareholders, subject to certain conditions.
Commercial Sales—We sell Sears merchandise, parts, and services to commercial customers through our business-to-business Sears Commercial Sales and Appliance Builder/Distributor businesses.
Sears Commercial Sales provides appliances and services to commercial customers in the single-family residential construction/remodel, property management, multi-family new construction, and government/military sectors.
Our Appliance Builder/Distributor business offers premium appliance and plumbing fixtures to architects, designers, and new construction or remodeling customers, and is currently operating in nine markets with 17 facilities.
Home Services—Product Repair Services, the nation's largest product repair service provider, is a key element in our active relationship with more than 41 million households. With approximately 7,500 service technicians making over 13 million service and installation calls annually, this business delivers

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a broad range of retail-related residential and commercial services across all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Guam and the Virgin Islands under either the Sears Parts & Repair Services or A&E Factory Service trade names. Commercial and residential customers can obtain parts and repair services for all major brands of products within the appliances, lawn and garden equipment, consumer electronics, floor care products, and heating and cooling systems categories. We also provide repair parts with supporting instructions for “do-it-yourself” members and customers through our searspartsdirect.com website. This business also offers protection agreements, product installation services and Kenmore and Carrier brand residential heating and cooling systems. Home Services also includes home improvement services (primarily siding, windows, cabinet refacing, kitchen remodeling, roofing, carpet and upholstery cleaning, air duct cleaning, and garage door installation and repair) provided through Sears Home Improvement Services and Sears Home & Business Franchises.
Sears Canada
Sears Canada, a consolidated, 51%-owned subsidiary of Sears, conducts retail operations in Canada similar to those conducted by Sears Domestic, with a greater emphasis on apparel and other softlines than in the U.S. stores.
As previously announced, we plan to work with the board and management of Sears Canada to increase the value of our investment in Sears Canada.
At February 1, 2014, Sears Canada operated a total of 118 full-line stores, 331 specialty stores (including 48 furniture and appliance stores, 234 hometown dealer stores primarily operated under independent local ownership, four appliance and mattress stores, 34 Corbeil stores, and 11 outlet stores), eight home services showrooms, 1,446 catalog pick-up locations and 97 travel offices. Sears Canada also sells its products through its sears.ca website.
Separation of Sears Hometown and Outlet Businesses
On October 11, 2012, we completed the separation of our Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses through a rights offering transaction. Holdings received gross proceeds of $446.5 million with respect to the transaction, consisting of $346.5 million for the sale of Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc. ("SHO") common shares and $100 million through a dividend from SHO prior to the separation. Prior to the separation, SHO entered into an asset-based senior secured revolving credit facility with a group of financial institutions to provide (subject to availability under a borrowing base) for aggregate maximum borrowings of $250 million. Borrowings of $100 million from this revolving credit facility were used to fund the dividend paid to Holdings. We accounted for this separation in accordance with accounting standards applicable to common control transactions as ESL Investments, Inc. (together with its affiliated funds, "ESL") is a majority shareholder of Holdings and became a majority shareholder of SHO as a result of exercising subscription rights pursuant to the rights offering. Accordingly, we classified the difference between the proceeds received and the carrying value of net assets contributed to SHO as a reduction of capital in excess of par value in the Consolidated Statement of Equity for the period ended February 2, 2013.
In connection with the separation, Holdings and certain of its subsidiaries entered into various agreements with SHO under the terms described in Note 15. Because of the various agreements with SHO, the Company has determined that it has significant continuing cash flows with SHO. Accordingly, the operating results for SHO through the date of the separation are presented within the consolidated continuing operations of Holdings and the Sears Domestic segment in the accompanying Consolidated Financial Statements. See Note 15 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements for further information related to the agreements with SHO.
Partial Spin-Off of Interest in Sears Canada
On November 13, 2012, we completed a partial spin-off (the "spin-off") of our interest in Sears Canada. Prior to the spin-off, Holdings beneficially owned approximately 96% of the issued and outstanding common shares of Sears Canada. In connection with the spin-off, we distributed approximately 45 million common shares of Sears Canada held by Holdings on a pro rata basis to holders of Holdings' common stock. Following the spin-off, Holdings was the beneficial holder of approximately 51% of the issued and outstanding common shares of Sears Canada, and as such, Holdings has maintained control of Sears Canada and will continue to consolidate the results of Sears Canada. We accounted for the spin-off as an equity transaction in accordance with accounting standards

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applicable to noncontrolling interests. Accordingly, we reclassified a portion of our ownership interest in Sears Canada and accumulated other comprehensive loss to noncontrolling interest in the Consolidated Statement of Equity at February 2, 2013.
At February 1, 2014, February 2, 2013 and January 28, 2012, Holdings was the beneficial holder of approximately 52 million, or 51%, 52 million, or 51%, and 97 million, or 95%, respectively, of the common shares of Sears Canada.
Spin-Off of Orchard Supply Hardware Stores Corporation
On December 30, 2011, we completed the spin-off to our shareholders of all the capital stock of Orchard Supply Hardware Stores Corporation ("Orchard") that was owned by Holdings immediately prior to the spin-off, consisting of common stock that represented approximately 80% of the voting power of Orchard's outstanding capital stock and preferred stock that represented 100% of Orchard's outstanding nonvoting capital stock. In connection with the spin-off, Holdings and certain of its subsidiaries entered into various agreements with Orchard, including a distribution agreement, a transition services agreement, an appliance sale and consignment agreement and brand license agreements. In addition, certain tax matters between Holdings and Orchard are governed by a tax sharing agreement entered into in 2005.
Real Estate Transactions
In the normal course of business, we consider opportunities to purchase leased operating properties, as well as offers to sell owned, or assign leased, operating and non-operating properties. These transactions may, individually or in the aggregate, result in material proceeds or outlays of cash. In addition, we review leases that will expire in the short term in order to determine the appropriate action to take with respect to them.
Further information concerning our real estate transactions is contained in Note 11 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.
 Trademarks and Trade Names
The KMART® and SEARS® trade names, service marks and trademarks, used by us both in the United States and internationally, are material to our retail and other related businesses.
We sell proprietary branded merchandise under a number of brand names that are important to our operations. Our KENMORE®, CRAFTSMAN®, DIEHARD® and LANDS' END® brands are among the most recognized proprietary brands in retailing. These marks are the subject of numerous United States and foreign trademark registrations. Other well recognized Company trademarks and service marks include CANYON RIVER BLUES®, COVINGTON®, SHOP YOUR WAYSM, SMART SENSE®, STRUCTURE®, THOM MCAN® and TOUGHSKINS®, which also are registered or are the subject of pending registration applications in the United States. Generally, our rights in our trade names and marks continue so long as we use them.
Seasonality
The retail business is seasonal in nature, and we generate a high proportion of our revenues, operating income and operating cash flows during the fourth quarter of our year, which includes the holiday season. As a result, our overall profitability is heavily impacted by our fourth quarter operating results. Additionally, in preparation for the fourth quarter holiday season, we significantly increase our merchandise inventory levels, which are financed from operating cash flows, credit terms received from vendors and borrowings under our domestic credit agreement (described in the “Uses and Sources of Liquidity” section below). Fourth quarter reported revenues accounted for approximately 30% of total reported revenues in each of the years 2013, 2012 and 2011. See Note 19 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements for further information on revenues earned by quarter in 2013 and 2012.
Competition
Our business is subject to highly competitive conditions. We compete with a wide variety of retailers, including other department stores, discounters, home improvement stores, consumer electronics dealers, auto service

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providers, specialty retailers, wholesale clubs, as well as many other retailers operating on a national, regional or local level in the U.S. and Canada. Online and catalog businesses, which handle similar lines of merchandise, also compete with us. Walmart, Target, Kohl's, J.C. Penney, Macy's, The Home Depot, Lowe's, Best Buy and Amazon are some of the national retailers and businesses with which we compete. The Home Depot and Lowe's are major competitors in relation to our home appliance business, which accounted for approximately 13% of our 2013, 15% of our 2012 and 16% of our 2011 reported revenues. Sears Canada competes in Canada with Hudson's Bay Company, other Canadian-based store and online retailers, as well as certain U.S.-based competitors, including some of those mentioned above, that are expanding into Canada. Success in these competitive marketplaces is based on factors such as price, product assortment and quality, service and convenience, including availability of retail-related services such as access to credit, product delivery, repair and installation. Additionally, we are influenced by a number of factors including, but not limited to, the cost of goods, consumer debt availability and buying patterns, economic conditions, customer preferences, inflation, currency exchange fluctuations, weather patterns, and catastrophic events. Item 1A in this report on Form 10-K contains further information regarding risks to our business.
Employees
At February 1, 2014, subsidiaries of Holdings had approximately 226,000 employees in the United States and U.S. territories, and approximately 23,000 employees in Canada through Sears Canada. These employee counts include part-time employees.
 Our Website; Availability of SEC Reports and Other Information
Our corporate website is located at searsholdings.com. Our Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and any amendments to these reports are available, free of charge, through the "SEC Filings" portion of the Investor Information section of our website as soon as reasonably practicable after they are electronically filed with, or furnished to, the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC").
The Corporate Governance Guidelines of our Board of Directors, the charters of the Audit, Compensation, Finance and Nominating and Corporate Governance Committees of the Board of Directors, our Code of Conduct and the Board of Directors Code of Conduct are available in the Corporate Governance section of searsholdings.com. References to our website address or the website address of Sears Canada do not constitute incorporation by reference of the information contained on such websites, and the information contained on the websites is not part of this document.
Item  1A.
Risk Factors
Our operations and financial results are subject to various risks and uncertainties, including those described below, which could adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition.
If we fail to offer merchandise and services that our members and customers want, our sales may be limited, which would reduce our revenues and profits.
In order for our business to be successful, we must identify, obtain supplies of, and offer to our members and customers, attractive, innovative and high-quality merchandise on a continuous basis. Our products and services must satisfy the desires of our members and customers, whose preferences may change in the future. If we misjudge either the demand for products and services we sell or our members' and customers' purchasing habits and tastes, we may be faced with excess inventories of some products and missed opportunities for products and services we chose not to offer. In addition, our sales may decline or we may be required to sell the merchandise we have obtained at lower prices. This would have a negative effect on our business and results of operations.

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If our integrated retail strategy to transform into a member-centric retailer is not successful, our business and results of operations could be adversely affected.
We are seeking to transform into a member-centric retailer through our integrated retail strategy, which is based on a number of initiatives, including our Shop Your Way program, that depend, among other things, on our ability to respond quickly to ongoing technology developments and implement new ways to understand and rely on the data to interact with our members and customers in order to achieve expected benefits. In addition, one or more of these initiatives may not be accepted by our members and customers, which may result in the Company's sales being less than it anticipates; and no assurance can be given that our strategy and offerings will be successful and will not have a material adverse effect on our reputation, financial condition and operating results.
If we do not successfully manage our inventory levels, our operating results will be adversely affected.
We must maintain sufficient inventory levels to operate our business successfully. However, we also must guard against accumulating excess inventory as we seek to minimize out-of-stock levels across all product categories and to maintain in-stock levels. We obtain a significant portion of our inventory from vendors located outside the United States. Some of these vendors often require lengthy advance notice of our requirements in order to be able to supply products in the quantities we request. This usually requires us to order merchandise, and enter into purchase order contracts for the purchase and manufacture of such merchandise, well in advance of the time these products will be offered for sale. As a result, we may experience difficulty in responding to a changing retail environment, which makes us vulnerable to changes in price. If we do not accurately anticipate the future demand for a particular product or the time it will take to obtain new inventory, our inventory levels will not be appropriate and our results of operations may be negatively impacted.
If we are unable to compete effectively in the highly competitive retail industry, our business and results of operations could be materially adversely affected.
The retail industry is highly competitive with few barriers to entry. We compete with a wide variety of retailers, including other department stores, discounters, home improvement stores, appliances and consumer electronics retailers, auto service providers, specialty retailers, wholesale clubs and many other competitors operating on a national, regional or local level in the U.S. and Canada. Some of our competitors are actively engaged in new store expansion. Online and catalog businesses, which handle similar lines of merchandise, and some of which are not required to collect sales taxes on purchases made by their customers, also compete with us. In this competitive marketplace, success is based on factors such as price, product assortment and quality, service and convenience.
Our success depends on our ability to differentiate ourselves from our competitors with respect to shopping convenience, a quality assortment of available merchandise and superior customer service. We must also successfully respond to our members' and customers' changing tastes. The performance of our competitors, as well as changes in their pricing policies, marketing activities, new store openings and other business strategies, could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Our business has been and will continue to be affected by worldwide economic conditions; a failure of the economy to sustain its recovery, a renewed decline in consumer-spending levels and other conditions, including inflation and changing prices of energy, could lead to reduced revenues and gross margins, and negatively impact our liquidity.
Many economic and other factors are outside of our control, including consumer and commercial credit availability, consumer confidence and spending levels, including the impact of payroll tax and medical cost increases on U.S. consumers, inflation, employment levels, housing sales and remodels, consumer debt levels, fuel costs and other challenges currently affecting the global economy, the full impact of which on our business, results of operations and financial condition cannot be predicted with certainty. These economic conditions adversely affect the disposable income levels of, and the credit available to, our members and customers, which could lead to reduced demand for our merchandise. Changing fuel and energy costs may have a significant impact on our operations. We require significant quantities of fuel for the vehicles used by technicians in our home services business and we are exposed to the risk associated with variations in the market price for petroleum products. We

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could experience a disruption in energy supplies, including our supply of gasoline, as a result of factors that are beyond our control, which could have an adverse effect on our business. Certain of our vendors also could experience increases in the cost of various raw materials, such as cotton, oil-related materials, steel and rubber, which could result in increases in the prices that we pay for merchandise, particularly apparel, appliances and tires. The domestic and international political situation also affects consumer confidence. The threat, outbreak or escalation of terrorism, military conflicts or other hostilities could lead to a decrease in consumer spending. Any of these events and factors could cause us to increase inventory markdowns and promotional expenses, thereby reducing our gross margins and operating results.
The lack of willingness of our vendors to provide acceptable payment terms could negatively impact our liquidity and/or reduce the availability of products or services we seek to procure.
We depend on our vendors to provide us with financing on our purchases of inventory and services. Our vendors could seek to limit the availability of vendor credit to us or other terms under which they sell to us, or both, which could negatively impact our liquidity. In addition, the inability of vendors to access liquidity, or the insolvency of vendors, could lead to their failure to deliver inventory or other services. Certain of our vendors finance their operations and/or reduce the risk associated with collecting accounts receivable from us by selling or “factoring” the receivables or by purchasing credit insurance or other forms of protection from loss associated with our credit risks. The ability of our vendors to do so is subject to the perceived credit quality of the Company. Such vendors could be limited in their ability to factor receivables or obtain credit protection in the future because of our perceived financial position and creditworthiness, which could reduce the availability of products or services we seek to procure.
Certain factors, including changes in market conditions and our credit ratings, may limit our access to capital markets and other financing sources and materially increase our borrowing costs.
In addition to credit terms from vendors, our liquidity needs are funded by our operating cash flows and, to the extent necessary, borrowings under our credit agreements and commercial paper program and access to capital markets. The availability of financing depends on numerous factors, including economic and market conditions, our operating performance, our credit ratings, and lenders' assessments of our prospects and the prospects of the retail industry in general. Changes in these factors may affect our cost of financing, liquidity and our ability to access financing sources, including our commercial paper program and possible second lien indebtedness that is permitted under the domestic revolving credit facility, with respect to each of which we have no lender commitments. Rating agencies revise their ratings for the companies that they follow from time to time and our ratings may be revised or withdrawn in their entirety at any time.
While the Company's domestic revolving credit facility currently provides for up to $3.275 billion of lender commitments, our ability to borrow funds under this facility is limited by a borrowing base determined relative to the value, from time to time, of eligible inventory, accounts receivable and certain other assets. In addition, our ability to incur possible second lien indebtedness that is otherwise permitted under the domestic revolving credit facility is limited by a borrowing base requirement under the indenture that governs our senior secured notes due 2018. If, through asset sales or other means, the value of these eligible assets is not sufficient to support borrowings of up to the full amount of the commitments under this facility, we will not have full access to the facility, but rather could have access to a lesser amount determined by the borrowing base. Such a decline in the value of eligible assets also could result in our inability to borrow up to the full amount of second lien indebtedness permitted by the domestic credit facility, but rather we could be limited to borrowing a lesser amount determined by the borrowing base as calculated pursuant to the terms of the indenture. The domestic revolving credit facility also effectively limits full access to the facility if our fixed charge ratio at the last day of any quarter is less than 1.0 to 1.0. As of February 1, 2014, our fixed charge ratio was less than 1.0 to 1.0.
The lenders under our credit facilities may not be able to meet their commitments if they experience shortages of capital and liquidity and there can be no assurance that our ability to otherwise access the credit markets will not be adversely affected by changes in the financial markets and the global economy.

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We cannot predict whether our plans to generate liquidity will be successful.
We have plans to generate at least $1.0 billion million of additional liquidity during fiscal year 2014. We currently anticipate generating approximately $500 million from an exit dividend in connection with the planned separation of our Lands' End, Inc. subsidiary through a pro rata distribution to our stockholders (the "LE Spin-off"), we are working with the board and management of Sears Canada to increase the value of our investment in Sears Canada, and we are evaluating strategic alternatives for our Sears Auto Centers business, subject in each case to certain conditions, including board approval in the case of possible transactions involving Sears Canada and Sears Auto Centers. The achievement of these objectives and outcome of these initiatives are subject to risks and uncertainties with respect to market conditions and other factors that may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from our plans, and there can be no assurance that transactions to monetize assets or other actions to generate liquidity will become available on terms that are acceptable to us, on intended timetables or at all. In addition, there can be no assurance that the evaluation and/or completion of any of these potential transactions will not have a negative impact on our other businesses.
Potential liabilities in connection with the separation of Lands' End, Inc. may arise under fraudulent conveyance and transfer laws and legal capital requirements.
With respect to the LE Spin-off, if either Holdings or Lands' End subsequently fails to pay its creditors or enters insolvency proceedings, the transaction may be challenged under U.S. federal, U.S. state and foreign fraudulent conveyance and transfer laws, as well as legal capital requirements governing distributions and similar transactions. If a court were to determine under these laws that, (a) at the time of the LE Spin-off, the entity in question: (1) was insolvent; (2) was rendered insolvent by reason of the LE Spin-off; (3) had remaining assets constituting unreasonably small capital; (4) intended to incur, or believed it would incur, debts beyond its ability to pay these debts as they matured; or (b) the transaction in question failed to satisfy applicable legal capital requirements, the court could determine that the LE Spin-off was voidable, in whole or in part. Subject to various defenses, the court could then require Holdings or Lands' End, or other recipients of value in connection with the LE Spin-off (potentially including Lands' End stockholders as recipients of shares of Lands' End common stock in connection with the spin-off), as the case may be, to turn over value to other entities involved in the LE Spin-off and contemplated transactions for the benefit of unpaid creditors. The measure of insolvency and applicable legal capital requirements will vary depending upon the jurisdiction whose law is being applied.
We rely extensively on computer systems to implement our integrated retail strategy, process transactions, summarize results and otherwise manage our business. Disruptions in these systems could harm our ability to run our business.
Given the significance of our online and mobile capabilities, our collection and use of data to create personalized experiences, and the number of individual transactions we have each year, including in our stores, it is critical that we maintain uninterrupted operation of our computer and communications hardware and software systems, some of which are based on end-of-life or legacy technology, operate with minimal or no vendor support and are otherwise difficult to maintain. Our systems are subject to damage or interruption from power outages, computer and telecommunications failures, computer viruses, security breaches, catastrophic events such as fires, tornadoes and hurricanes, and usage errors by our employees. Operating legacy systems subject us to inherent costs and risks associated with maintaining, upgrading and replacing these systems and retaining sufficiently skilled personnel to maintain and operate the systems, demands on management time, and other risks and costs. Cyber-security risks such as malicious software and attempts to gain unauthorized access to data are rapidly evolving. Techniques or software used to gain unauthorized access, and/or disable, degrade or harm our systems may be difficult to detect or scope for prolonged periods of time, and we may be unable to anticipate these techniques or put in place protective or preventive measures. These attempts to gain unauthorized access could lead to disruptions in our systems, unauthorized release of confidential or otherwise protected information or corruption of data. If individuals are successful in infiltrating, breaking into, disrupting, damaging or otherwise stealing from the computer systems of the Company or its third-party providers, or if our systems are otherwise damaged or cease to function properly, we may have to make a significant investment to fix or replace them, we may suffer interruptions in our operations in the interim, we may face costly litigation, the ability for our members to earn or redeem points in our Shop Your Way program may be impacted or halted, and our reputation with our members and customers may

9


be harmed. Any material interruption in our computer operations may have a material adverse effect on our business or results of operations, including on our Shop Your Way program and participation in or engagement with that program. In addition, we are pursuing initiatives to transform our information technology processes and systems. These initiatives are highly complex and include replacing legacy systems, upgrading existing systems, and acquiring new systems and hardware with updated functionality. The risk of disruption is increased in periods when such complex and significant systems changes are undertaken.
If we do not maintain the security of our member and customer, associate or company information, we could damage our reputation, incur substantial additional costs and become subject to litigation.
Any significant security compromise, breach of member and customer, associate or company data (either held or maintained by the Company or our third-party providers) or disruption or delay on the ability for our members to earn or redeem points in our Shop Your Way program, could significantly damage our reputation and brands and result in additional costs, lower participation in or engagement with our Shop Your Way program, lost sales, exposure to fraudulent sales, government investigations, government enforcement actions, fines and/or lawsuits. The regulatory environment related to information security and privacy is increasingly rigorous, with new and constantly changing requirements applicable to our business, and compliance with those requirements could result in additional costs or accelerate these costs. There is no guarantee that the procedures that we have implemented to protect against unauthorized access to secured data are adequate to safeguard against all data security breaches. A data security breach could result in a loss of customer or member confidence and negatively impact our business, including our Shop Your Way program, and our results of operations.
Due to the seasonality of our business, our annual operating results would be adversely affected if our business performs poorly in the fourth quarter.
Our business is seasonal, with a high proportion of revenues, operating income and operating cash flows being generated during the fourth quarter of our year, which includes the holiday season. As a result, our fourth quarter operating results significantly impact our annual operating results. Our fourth quarter operating results may fluctuate significantly, based on many factors, including holiday spending patterns and weather conditions.
Our sales may fluctuate for a variety of reasons, which could adversely affect our results of operations.
Our business is sensitive to customers' spending patterns, which in turn are subject to prevailing economic conditions. Our sales and results of operations have fluctuated in the past, and we expect them to continue to fluctuate in the future. A variety of other factors affect our sales and financial performance, including:
actions by our competitors, including opening of new stores in our existing markets or changes to the way these competitors go to market online,
seasonal fluctuations due to weather conditions,
changes in our merchandise strategy and mix,
changes in population and other demographics, and
timing of our promotional events.
Accordingly, our results for any one quarter are not necessarily indicative of the results to be expected for any other quarter, and comparable store sales for any particular future period may increase or decrease. For more information on our results of operations, see “Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in Item 7 of this report on Form 10-K.
We rely on foreign sources for significant amounts of our merchandise, and our business may therefore be negatively affected by the risks associated with international trade.
We depend on a large number of products produced in foreign markets. We face risks, including reputational risks, associated with the delivery of merchandise originating outside the United States, including:
potential economic and political instability in countries where our suppliers are located,

10


increases in shipping costs,
manufacturing and transportation delays and interruptions,
supplier compliance with applicable laws, including labor and environmental laws, and with our global compliance program for suppliers and factories,
adverse fluctuations in currency exchange rates, and
changes in U.S. and foreign laws affecting the importation and taxation of goods, including duties, tariffs and quotas, or changes in the enforcement of those laws.
We rely on third parties to provide us with services in connection with the administration of certain aspects of our business.
We have entered into agreements with third-party service providers (both domestic and overseas) to provide processing and administrative functions over a broad range of areas, and we may continue to do so in the future. These areas include finance and accounting, information technology, including IT development, call center, human resources and procurement functions. Services provided by third parties as a part of outsourcing initiatives could be interrupted as a result of many factors, such as acts of God or contract disputes, and any failure by third parties to provide us with these services on a timely basis or within our service level expectations and performance standards could result in a disruption of our business. In addition, to the extent we are unable to maintain our outsourcing arrangements; we would incur substantial costs, including costs associated with hiring new employees, in order to return these services in-house. These outsourcing arrangements also carry the risk that the Company will fail to adequately retain the significant internal historical knowledge of our business and systems that is transferred to the service providers as the employment of the Company's personnel who possess such knowledge ends.
We could incur charges due to impairment of goodwill, intangible and long-lived assets.
At February 1, 2014, we had goodwill and intangible asset balances of $3.2 billion, which are subject to periodic testing for impairment. Our long-lived assets, primarily stores, also are subject to periodic testing for impairment. A significant amount of judgment is involved in the periodic testing. Failure to achieve sufficient levels of cash flow within each of our reporting units, or sales of our branded products or cash flow generated from operations at individual store locations could result in impairment charges for goodwill and intangible assets or fixed asset impairment for long-lived assets, which could have a material adverse effect on our reported results of operations. Impairment charges, if any, resulting from the periodic testing are non-cash. A significant and sustained decline in our stock price could result in goodwill impairment charges. During times of financial market volatility, significant judgment is used to determine the underlying cause of the decline and whether stock price declines are short-term in nature or indicative of an event or change in circumstances. See Notes 12 and 13 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements for further information.
The loss of key personnel may disrupt our business and adversely affect our financial results.
We depend on the contributions of key personnel, including Edward S. Lampert, our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, and other key employees, for our future success. Although certain executives have employment agreements with us, changes in our senior management and any future departures of key employees may disrupt our business and materially adversely affect our results of operations.
Affiliates of our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, whose interests may be different than your interests, exert substantial influence over our Company.
Affiliates of Edward S. Lampert, our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, beneficially own approximately 48% of the outstanding shares of our common stock. These affiliates are controlled, directly or indirectly, by Mr. Lampert. Accordingly, these affiliates, and thus Mr. Lampert, have substantial influence over many, if not all, actions to be taken or approved by our stockholders, including the election of directors and any transactions involving a change of control.

11


The interests of these affiliates, which have investments in other companies, including our former subsidiary, Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc., may from time to time diverge from the interests of our other stockholders, particularly with regard to new investment opportunities. This substantial influence may have the effect of discouraging offers to acquire our Company because the consummation of any such acquisition would likely require the consent of these affiliates.
We may be unable to protect or preserve the image of our brands and our intellectual property rights, which could have a negative impact on our business.
We regard our copyrights, service marks, trademarks, trade dress, trade secrets, patents and similar intellectual property as critical to our success, particularly those that relate to our private branded merchandise. As such, we rely on trademark and copyright law, patent law, trade secret protection and confidentiality agreements with our associates, consultants, vendors, and others to protect our proprietary rights. Nevertheless, the steps we take to protect our proprietary rights may be inadequate. If we are unable to protect or preserve the value of our trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, patents or other proprietary rights for any reason, or if we fail to maintain the image of our brands due to merchandise and service quality issues, actual or perceived, adverse publicity, governmental investigations or litigation, or other reasons, our brands and reputation could be damaged and we could lose members and customers.
We may be subject to product liability claims if people or properties are harmed by the products we sell or the services we offer.
Some of the products we sell may expose us to product liability claims relating to personal injury, death, or property damage caused by such products, and may require us to take actions such as product recalls. We also provide various services, which could also give rise to such claims. Although we maintain liability insurance, we cannot be certain that our coverage will be adequate for liabilities actually incurred or that insurance will continue to be available to us on economically reasonable terms, or at all.
We may be subject to periodic litigation and other regulatory proceedings. These proceedings may be affected by changes in laws and government regulations or changes in the enforcement thereof.
From time to time, we may be involved in lawsuits and regulatory actions relating to our business, certain of which may be in jurisdictions with reputations for aggressive application of laws and procedures against corporate defendants. Some of these actions have the potential for significant statutory penalties, and compensatory, treble or punitive damages. Our pharmacy, home services and grocery businesses, in particular, are subject to numerous federal, state and local regulations, and a significant change in, or noncompliance with, these regulations could have a material adverse effect on our compliance costs and results of operations. We are impacted by trends in litigation, including class-action allegations brought under various consumer protection and employment laws, including wage and hour laws, and investigations and actions that are based on allegations of untimely compliance or noncompliance with applicable regulations or statutes. Due to the inherent uncertainties of litigation and regulatory proceedings, we cannot accurately predict the ultimate outcome of any such proceedings. An unfavorable outcome could have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations. In addition, regardless of the outcome of any litigation or regulatory proceedings, these proceedings could result in substantial costs and may require that we devote substantial resources to defend our Company. Further, changes in governmental regulations both in the United States and in the other countries where we operate could have adverse effects on our business and subject us to additional regulatory actions. For a description of current legal proceedings, see Item 3, “Legal Proceedings,” as well as Note 18 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements in this report on Form 10-K.
Our pension and postretirement benefit plan obligations are currently underfunded, and we may have to make significant cash payments to some or all of these plans, which would reduce the cash available for our businesses.
We have unfunded obligations under our domestic and foreign pension and postretirement benefit plans. The funded status of our pension plans is dependent upon many factors, including returns on invested assets, the level of

12


certain market interest rates and the discount rate used to determine pension obligations. Unfavorable returns on the plan assets or unfavorable changes in applicable laws or regulations could materially change the timing and amount of required plan funding, which would reduce the cash available for our businesses. In addition, a decrease in the discount rate used to determine pension obligations could result in an increase in the valuation of pension obligations, which could affect the reported funding status of our pension plans and future contributions, as well as the periodic pension cost in subsequent years. Moreover, unfavorable regulatory action could materially change the timing and amount of required plan funding and negatively impact our business operations and impair our business strategy.
Item 1B.
Unresolved Staff Comments
Not applicable.

13


Item  2.
Properties
The following table summarizes the locations of our Kmart and Sears Domestic stores at February 1, 2014:
 
 
Kmart
 
Sears Domestic
State/Territory
 
Discount
Stores
 
Super
Centers
 
Full-line
Mall Stores
 
Sears
Essentials/
Grand Stores
 
Specialty
Stores
Alabama
 
22

 

 
10

 

 

Alaska
 

 

 
3

 

 

Arizona
 
15

 

 
14

 

 

Arkansas
 
5

 

 
7

 

 
1

California
 
96

 

 
79

 
1

 
5

Colorado
 
13

 

 
11

 
1

 
1

Connecticut
 
7

 

 
8

 

 

Delaware
 
6

 

 
4

 

 

Florida
 
62

 

 
51

 

 
1

Georgia
 
27

 

 
19

 

 

Hawaii
 
7

 

 
4

 

 

Idaho
 
8

 

 
5

 

 

Illinois
 
42

 
2

 
29

 
1

 
8

Indiana
 
31

 
2

 
17

 

 
1

Iowa
 
20

 

 
9

 

 
2

Kansas
 
9

 

 
8

 

 
1

Kentucky
 
27

 

 
8

 

 

Louisiana
 
11

 

 
13

 

 
1

Maine
 
6

 

 
5

 

 

Maryland
 
21

 

 
19

 

 

Massachusetts
 
19

 

 
21

 

 

Michigan
 
68

 
5

 
23

 

 

Minnesota
 
21

 

 
11

 

 
4

Mississippi
 
5

 

 
4

 

 

Missouri
 
26

 

 
10

 
1

 

Montana
 
9

 

 
3

 

 

Nebraska
 
8

 

 
4

 

 

Nevada
 
10

 

 
4

 
1

 
1

New Hampshire
 
5

 

 
6

 

 

New Jersey
 
32

 

 
20

 

 
2

New Mexico
 
13

 

 
7

 

 

New York
 
50

 

 
45

 

 
7

North Carolina
 
39

 

 
21

 

 

North Dakota
 
6

 

 
4

 

 

Ohio
 
51

 
7

 
37

 
1

 
1

Oklahoma
 
9

 

 
10

 

 

Oregon
 
11

 

 
7

 

 
1

Pennsylvania
 
92

 
1

 
42

 
1

 
2

Rhode Island
 
1

 

 
2

 

 

South Carolina
 
22

 

 
11

 

 

South Dakota
 
9

 

 
2

 

 

Tennessee
 
30

 

 
17

 

 

Texas
 
19

 

 
58

 
1

 
1

Utah
 
14

 

 
4

 
1

 
1

Vermont
 
3

 

 
2

 

 

Virginia
 
36

 

 
19

 
1

 
1

Washington
 
13

 

 
19

 

 
2

West Virginia
 
15

 

 
7

 

 

Wisconsin
 
26

 

 
14

 

 
5

Wyoming
 
9

 

 
2

 

 

Puerto Rico
 
24

 

 
9

 

 
1

U.S. Virgin Islands
 
4

 

 

 

 

Guam
 
1

 

 

 

 

Totals
 
1,135

 
17

 
768

 
10

 
50

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

14


  
 
Kmart 
 
Sears Domestic
 
Sears Canada
 
Total
 
Discount
Stores
 
Super
Centers
 
Full-line
Mall Stores
 
Sears
Essentials/
Grand Stores
 
Specialty
Stores
 
Full-line
Stores
 
Specialty
Stores
 
Owned
183

 
12

 
485

 
7

 
25

 
14

 
2

 
728

Leased
952

 
5

 
283

 
3

 
25

 
104

 
104

 
1,476

Independently-owned and operated stores

 

 

 

 

 

 
225

 
225

Stores at February 1, 2014
1,135

 
17

 
768

 
10

 
50

 
118

 
331

 
2,429

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
In addition, at February 1, 2014, we had 36 domestic supply chain distribution centers, of which 12 were owned and 24 were leased with remaining lease terms ranging up to six years. Of the total, 10 primarily support Kmart stores, 21 primarily support Sears stores and five support both Sears and Kmart stores. We also had 419 domestic store warehouses, customer call centers and service facilities (including 17 facilities related to our appliance builder/distributor business), most of which are leased for terms ranging generally from three to five years or are part of other facilities included in the above table. Many of our facilities are also used to support our online channels.
Our principal executive offices are located on a 200-acre site owned by us at the Prairie Stone office park in Hoffman Estates, Illinois. The complex consists of six interconnected office buildings totaling approximately two million gross square feet of office space. In addition, we have a campus in Dodgeville, Wisconsin supporting the corporate headquarters, distribution center and customer sales/service operations for Lands' End. We also own an 86,000 square foot office building in Troy, Michigan. We operate numerous buying offices throughout the world that procure product internationally, as well as an information technology center in Pune, India.
At February 1, 2014, Sears Canada operated a total of 118 full-line stores, 331 specialty stores (including 48 furniture and appliance stores, 234 hometown dealer stores operated under independent local ownership, four appliance and mattress stores, 34 Corbeil stores, and 11 outlet stores), eight home services showrooms, 1,446 catalog pick-up locations and 97 travel offices.
A description of our leasing arrangements and commitments appears in Note 14 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.
Item 3.
Legal Proceedings
Item 103 of SEC Regulation S-K requires that we disclose legal proceedings to which the Company and a governmental authority is a party and that arise under laws dealing with the discharge of materials into the environment or the protection of the environment, if the proceeding reasonably involves potential monetary sanctions of $100,000 or more. Disclosure also is required as to any such proceedings known by us to be contemplated by governmental authorities. In that connection, we note that Sears received a notice of violation from the California South Coast Air Quality Management District ("SCAQMD") alleging that Sears stores that are located in the SCAQMD jurisdiction sold architectural coating products that exceed the current SCAQMD limitations on volatile organic compounds. The parties entered into a settlement agreement under which the Company paid a $50,000 penalty.
See Part II, Item 8, “Financial Statements—Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements,” Note 18—“Legal Proceedings,” for additional information regarding legal proceedings, which information is incorporated herein by this reference.
Item 4.
Mine Safety Disclosures
Not applicable.

15


EXECUTIVE OFFICERS OF THE REGISTRANT
The following table and information sets forth the names of our executive officers, their current positions and offices with the Company, the date they first became executive officers of the Company, their current ages, and their principal employment during the past five years.
Name
 
Position
 
Date First Became an Executive Officer
 
Age
Edward S. Lampert
 
Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer
 
2013
 
51
Jeffrey A. Balagna
 
Executive Vice President, Chief Information Officer
 
2013
 
53
Ronald D. Boire
 
Executive Vice President, Chief Merchandising Officer and President, Sears Full Line Stores and Kmart Formats
 
2012
 
52
Imran Jooma
 
Executive Vice President and President, Online, Marketing, Pricing and Financial Services
 
2012
 
41
Robert A. Schriesheim
 
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
 
2011
 
53
Dane A. Drobny
 
Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
 
2010
 
46
Leena Munjal
 
Senior Vice President, Customer Experience and Integrated Retail
 
2013
 
37
Robert A. Riecker
 
Vice President, Controller and Chief Accounting Officer
 
2012
 
49
__________________
 
Mr. Lampert has served as Chairman of the Company's Board of Directors since 2004 and as our Chief Executive Officer since February 2013. He also is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ESL Investments, Inc., which he founded in April 1988.
Mr. Balagna joined the Company as Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer in May 2013. Prior to joining the Company, he served as the Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer of Eli Lilly and Company, a pharmaceutical company, since February 2012. He previously served in senior positions for Carlson Companies, including President and Chief Executive Officer for Carlson Marketing Worldwide, a marketing, travel and hospitality company, which was acquired by Groupe Aeroplan, Inc. in 2009, from 2008 to September 2011, Chief Executive Officer of Carlson’s T.G.I. Friday’s and Pickup Stix casual restaurant businesses in 2008, and Executive Vice President, Chief Information Officer and Customer Technology Officer for Carlson Companies from 2005 to 2008. He previously served in senior positions for Medtronic, Inc., General Electric Company, and Ford Motor Company.
Mr. Boire joined the Company as Executive Vice President, Chief Merchandising Officer and President, Sears Full Line Stores and Kmart Formats in January 2012. He served from October 2009 until January 2012 as President and Chief Executive Officer of Brookstone, a consumer products company. He served as President, U.S. Toys, North America, for Toys “R” Us, a specialty retailer of toys and juvenile products, from July 2006 until September 2009. He previously served as Executive Vice President, Global Merchandise Manager, of Best Buy Co., Inc., a retailer of consumer electronics and related products, from May 2003 to June 2006. Prior to joining Best Buy Co., Inc., Mr. Boire served for 17 years in a variety of increasingly senior roles at Sony Electronics Inc., a marketer of electronic products and services.
Mr. Jooma joined the Company in June 2007 as Vice President, e-Commerce, and has served in his current position since November 2011. He was elected Executive Vice President in November 2012. From May 2010 until November 2011, he served as the Company's Senior Vice President and President, e-Commerce. From August 2009 until May 2010, he served as Senior Vice President, e-Commerce, of the Company. Prior to joining the Company, he served as Vice President of eCommerce at Circuit City Stores, Inc. and prior thereto as the Divisional Vice President of eCommerce at OfficeMax Incorporated.

16


Mr. Schriesheim joined the Company as Executive Vice President in August 2011 and became Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer that same month. Prior to joining the Company, he served as the Chief Financial Officer of Hewitt Associates, Inc., a global human resources consulting and outsourcing company, from January 2010 to October 2010. From October 2006 to January 2010, he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Lawson Software, Inc., an ERP software provider. From August 2002 to October 2006, he was affiliated with ARCH Development Partners, LLC, a seed stage venture capital fund. Before joining ARCH, Mr. Schriesheim held executive positions at Global TeleSystems, SBC Equity Partners, Ameritech, AC Nielsen and Brooke Group Ltd. Mr. Schriesheim has served as a director of Skyworks Solutions, Inc. since May 2006 and is chairman of its audit committee. He also served as a director of Dobson Communications Corp. from 2004 to 2007, a director of Lawson Software from 2006 to 2011, a director and Co-Chairman of MSC Software Corporation from 2007 to 2009 and a director of Georgia Gulf Corporation from 2009 to 2010.
Mr. Drobny joined us as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary in May 2010. Prior to joining the Company, he practiced law with the law firm of Winston & Strawn LLP, most recently as Capital Partner, from September 1993 until May 2010.
Ms. Munjal was appointed to her current position in October 2012. She was appointed as Divisional Vice President, Integrated Retail and Member Experience, in July 2011 and was promoted to Vice President in June 2012. From October 2009 to June 2011, she served as Divisional Vice President, and Chief of Staff, Office of the Chairman, and served as Chief of Staff, Office of the CEO, from November 2007 to November 2009. Ms. Munjal joined Sears as Director, Information Technology, in March 2003.
Mr. Riecker was appointed to his current position in January 2012. He joined the Company as Assistant Controller in October 2005 and served as Vice President and Assistant Controller from May 2007 to October 2011. From October 2011 until his election as Vice President, Controller and Chief Accounting Officer, he served as the Company's Vice President, Internal Audit.

17


PART II
Item  5.
Market for Registrant's Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Holdings' common stock is quoted on The NASDAQ Stock Market under the ticker symbol SHLD. There were 13,148 shareholders of record at March 1, 2014. The quarterly high and low sales prices for Holdings' common stock are set forth below.
 
Fiscal Year 2013 
 
Sears Holdings
 
First
Quarter
 
Second
Quarter
 
Third
Quarter
 
Fourth
Quarter
Common stock price
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
    High
$
54.22

 
$
60.74

 
$
66.00

 
$
67.50

    Low
$
43.72

 
$
41.84

 
$
38.88

 
$
34.21

 
 
 
Fiscal Year 2012 
 
Sears Holdings
 
First
Quarter
 
Second
Quarter
 
Third
Quarter
 
Fourth
Quarter
Common stock price
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
    High
$
85.90

 
$
65.70

 
$
67.20

 
$
68.77

    Low
$
41.14

 
$
46.28

 
$
47.01

 
$
38.40

Holdings has not paid and does not expect to pay cash dividends in the foreseeable future.
Equity Compensation Plan Information
The following table reflects information about securities authorized for issuance under our equity compensation plans at February 1, 2014.
 
Plan Category
(a)
Number of securities
to be issued upon
exercise of
outstanding options,
warrants and
rights 
 
(b)
Weighted-average
exercise price of
outstanding
options,
warrants and
rights
 
(c)
Number of securities
remaining available for
future issuance
under equity
compensation plans*
Equity compensation plans approved by security holders
 
 
5,270,385
Equity compensation plans not approved by security holders
 
 
Total
 
 
5,270,385
 
__________________
*
Represents shares of common stock that may be issued pursuant to our 2006 Stock Plan or our 2013 Stock Plan. Awards under the 2006 Stock Plan may be restricted stock awards, a grant of shares of our common stock in connection with an award made under a long-term incentive plan, or certain other stock-based awards. Awards under the 2013 Stock Plan may be restricted stock, stock unit awards, incentive stock options, nonqualified stock options, stock appreciation rights, or certain other stock-based awards. The 2013 Stock Plan also allows common stock of Holdings to be awarded in settlement of an incentive award under the Sears Holdings Corporation Umbrella Incentive Program (and any incentive program established thereunder). The shares shown consist of 277,583 shares of common stock that are available for future issuance pursuant to our 2006 Stock Plan and 4,992,802 shares of common stock that are available for future issuance pursuant to our 2013 Stock Plan. Excludes shares covered by an outstanding plan award that, subsequent to February 1, 2014, ultimately are not delivered on an unrestricted basis (for example, because the award is forfeited, canceled, settled in cash or used to satisfy tax withholding obligations).

18


Stock Performance Graph
Comparison of Five-Year Cumulative Stockholder Return
The following graph compares the cumulative total return to stockholders on Holdings' common stock from January 30, 2009 through January 31, 2014, the last trading day before the end of fiscal year 2013, based on the market prices at the last trading day before the end of each fiscal year through and including fiscal year 2013 and assuming reinvestment of the value of shares of Orchard distributed to Holdings’ shareholders on December 30, 2011, subscription rights to purchase shares of common stock of SHO distributed to Holdings’ shareholders on October 11, 2012 and common shares of Sears Canada distributed to Holdings’ shareholders on November 13, 2012, with the return on the S&P 500 Stock Index, the S&P 500 Retailing Index and the S&P 500 Department Stores Index for the same period. The graph assumes an initial investment of $100 on January 30, 2009 in each of our common stock, the S&P 500 Stock Index, the S&P Retailing Index and the S&P 500 Department Stores Index.
The S&P 500 Retailing Index consists of companies included in the S&P 500 Stock Index in the broadly defined retail sector, which includes competing retailers of softlines (apparel and domestics) and hardlines (appliances, electronics and home improvement products), as well as food and drug retailers. The S&P 500 Department Stores Index consists primarily of department stores that compete with our full-line stores.
 
Jan. 30,
2009
 
Jan. 29,
2010
 
Jan. 28,
2011
 
Jan. 27,
2012
 
Feb. 1,
2013
 
Jan. 31,
2014
Sears Holdings
$
100.00

 
$
227.96

 
$
185.92

 
$
112.01

 
$
134.58

 
$
102.94

S&P 500 Stock Index
$
100.00

 
$
133.12

 
$
154.54

 
$
159.38

 
$
183.22

 
$
215.84

S&P 500 Retailing Index
$
100.00

 
$
155.54

 
$
191.89

 
$
214.72

 
$
269.46

 
$
333.86

S&P 500 Department Stores Index
$
100.00

 
$
167.17

 
$
187.76

 
$
208.69

 
$
210.82

 
$
239.53


19


Purchase of Equity Securities
During the quarter ended February 1, 2014, we did not repurchase any shares of our common stock under our common share repurchase program. At February 1, 2014, we had approximately $504 million of remaining authorization under the program.
 
 
Total
Number of
Shares
Purchased
(1)
 
Average
Price Paid
per Share
 
Total Number of
Shares Purchased
as Part of  Publicly
Announced
Program
(2)
 
Average
Price Paid
per  Share
for
Publicly
Announced
Program
 
Approximate
Dollar Value of
Shares that May
Yet Be Purchased
Under
the Program
November 3, 2013 to November 30, 2013
1,090

 
$
59.93

 

 
$

 
 
December 1, 2013 to January 4, 2014
4,077

 
59.07

 

 

 
 
January 5, 2014 to February 1, 2014
16,470

 
39.98

 

 

 
 
Total
21,637

 
$
44.58

 

 
$

 
$
504,000,000

__________________

(1) 
Consists entirely of 21,637 shares acquired from associates to meet withholding tax requirements from the vesting of restricted stock.
(2) 
Our common share repurchase program was initially announced on September 14, 2005 and has a total authorization since inception of the program of $6.5 billion, including the authorizations to purchase up to an additional $500 million of common stock on each of December 17, 2009 and May 2, 2011. The program has no stated expiration date.
The domestic credit agreement (described in the “Uses and Sources of Liquidity” section below) limits our ability to make restricted payments, including dividends and share repurchases, subject to specified exceptions that are available if, in each case, no event of default under the credit facility exists immediately before or after giving effect to the restricted payment. These include exceptions that require that projected availability under the credit facility, as defined, is at least 15% and an exception that requires that the restricted payment is funded from cash on hand and not from borrowings under the credit facility. The Domestic Credit Agreement also imposes various other requirements, which take effect if availability falls below designated thresholds, including a cash dominion requirement and a requirement that the fixed charge ratio at the last day of any quarter be not less than 1.0 to 1.0.



20


Item 6.
Selected Financial Data
The table below summarizes our recent financial information. The data set forth below should be read in conjunction with "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" in Item 7 and our Consolidated Financial Statements and notes thereto in Item 8.
 
 
Fiscal
dollars in millions, except per share and store data
2013
 
2012
 
2011
 
2010
 
2009
Summary of Operations
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Revenues (1)
$
36,188

 
$
39,854

 
$
41,567

 
$
42,664

 
$
43,360

Domestic comparable store sales %
(3.8
)%
 
(2.5
)%
 
(2.2
)%
 
(1.3
)%
 
(4.7
)%
Net income (loss) from continuing operations attributable to Holdings' shareholders (2)
(1,365
)
 
(930
)
 
(3,113
)
 
122

 
218

Per Common Share
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Basic:
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Net income (loss) from continuing operations attributable to Holdings' shareholders
$
(12.87
)
 
$
(8.78
)
 
$
(29.15
)
 
$
1.09

 
$
1.85

Diluted:
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Net income (loss) from continuing operations attributable to Holdings' shareholders
$
(12.87
)
 
$
(8.78
)
 
$
(29.15
)
 
$
1.09

 
$
1.85

Holdings' book value per common share
$
16.34

 
$
25.89

 
$
40.26

 
$
78.19

 
$
79.21

Financial Data
 
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Total assets
$
18,261

 
$
19,340

 
$
21,381

 
$
24,360

 
$
24,901

Long-term debt
2,559

 
1,579

 
1,693

 
1,872

 
949

Long-term capital lease obligations
275

 
364

 
395

 
472

 
510

Capital expenditures
329

 
378

 
432

 
426

 
350

Adjusted EBITDA
(337
)
 
536

 
196

 
1,291

 
1,635

Number of stores
2,429

 
2,548

 
4,010

 
3,949

 
3,862

__________________
 
(1) 
We follow a retail-based financial reporting calendar. Accordingly, the fiscal year ended February 2, 2013 contained 53 weeks, while all other years presented contained 52 weeks.
(2) 
The periods presented were impacted by certain significant items, which affected the comparability of amounts reflected in the above selected financial data. For 2013, 2012 and 2011, these significant items are discussed within Item 7, “Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.” 2010 results include the impact of domestic pension expense of $96 million, a $30 million charge related to store closings and severance, a gain on the sale of real estate of $28 million, mark-to-market losses of $4 million on Sears Canada hedge transactions, a tax impact of $9 million related to a dividend received from Sears Canada and a tax benefit of $13 million related to the resolution of certain income tax matters. 2009 results include the impact of domestic pension expense of $170 million, a $131 million charge related to store closings and severance, a gain on the sale of Sears Canada Headquarters of $44 million, a gain of $32 million recorded in connection with the settlement of Visa/MasterCard antitrust litigation, mark-to-market losses of $33 million on Sears Canada hedge transactions and a tax benefit of $41 million related to the resolution of certain income tax matters.



21


Item 7.
Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
We have divided our “Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” into the following six sections:
Overview of Holdings
Results of Operations:
Fiscal Year
Holdings' Consolidated Results
Business Segment Results
Analysis of Consolidated Financial Condition
Contractual Obligations and Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements
Application of Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Information
The discussion that follows should be read in conjunction with the consolidated financial statements and notes thereto included in Item 8.
OVERVIEW OF HOLDINGS
Holdings, the parent company of Kmart and Sears, was formed in connection with the March 24, 2005 Merger of these two companies. We are an integrated retailer with significant physical and intangible assets, as well as virtual capabilities enabled through technology. We currently operate a national network of stores with 1,980 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States, operating through Kmart and Sears, and 449 full-line and specialty retail stores in Canada operating through Sears Canada Inc. (“Sears Canada”), a 51%-owned subsidiary. Further, we operate a number of websites under the Sears.com and Kmart.com banners which offer more than 110 million products and provide the capability for our members and customers to engage in cross-channel transactions such as free store pickup; buy in store/ship to home; and buy online, return in store. We are also the home of Shop Your WaySM, a free member-based social shopping platform that offers rewards, personalized services and a unique experience. Shop Your Way connects all of the ways members shop - in store, at home, online and by phone.
We currently conduct our operations in three business segments: Kmart, Sears Domestic and Sears Canada. The nature of operations conducted within each of these segments is discussed within the “Business Segments” section of Item 1 in this report on Form 10-K. Our business segments have been determined in accordance with accounting standards regarding the determination, and reporting, of business segments.
Our focus in 2013 revolved around continuing our transformation into a member-centric retailer leveraging Shop Your Way and Integrated Retail, which we believe will position us for enhanced growth and profitability to create long-term shareholder value. The investments we made throughout 2013 are enabling us to learn more about how our members want to shop so that we can develop deeper relationships with them and provide them with access to the widest possible assortment of products and services. Looking ahead, we intend to continue to enhance our financial flexibility to support and drive our transformation. While transformations of this size are challenging, we believe that the changes we are making through Shop Your Way and Integrated Retail will benefit us in the changing retail landscape.
Our transformation is guided by these five key pillars:
Create lasting relationships with members by empowering them to manage their lives
Attain best in class productivity and efficiency
Build our brands
Reinvent the Company continuously through technology and innovation
Reinforce "The SHC Way" by living our values every day

22


We seek to achieve the execution of the transformation to drive profitability and position ourselves in the changing environment by the following:
Leveraging Shop Your Way and Integrated Retail as the foundation of our member-centric business model
Realignment of our of businesses to become a more focused company
Enhancing our financial flexibility to support and fund our transformation
Allowing shareholders to participate in value creation actions
Leveraging Shop Your Way and Integrated Retail
We seek to proactively transform our business to benefit from the changing retail landscape. At the core of our transformation is transitioning to a member-centric integrated retailer leveraging our Shop Your Way platform. Shop Your Way is unique in that it is a program that rewards members, enhances interaction with members and delivers useful information to our Company. As a result, we are able to be more strategic in how we invest in capabilities to enable our members to access the widest possible assortment of products and services.
Realignment Of Our Businesses
We are accelerating our pace of change to position ourselves in the changing environment. We are proactively learning more each day about how our members want to shop and what resonates with them. We are utilizing this feedback as we continue our transition and invest in two primary areas: Our member-based platform Shop Your Way and Integrated Retail. These two key elements represent a different way of doing business at Sears Holdings and are the foundations of our other programs and initiatives. Within these two key areas, we are making substantial investments in engaging members with personalized, relevant content, offering more capabilities to our members, continually enhancing member engagement, and building out our platform technology. To enable this change, we have been strategically realigning our portfolio of businesses to focus on our core strengths, simplify Sears Holdings and become a more focused company that is more efficient to manage and easier to understand - all while seeking to enable us to better optimize our allocation of capital and attract the best talent.
We are investing in capabilities that are intended to enable our members to access the widest possible assortment of products and services. In addition, we are using data and analytics on member trends to make targeted offers and decisions delivered in real-time. We are expanding our reach through Sears Marketplace, our innovative community that allows third-party merchants to advertise or sell their products on the Sears Holdings’ family of websites, where we now offer over 100 million items, and multiple delivery options. We are also developing digital and social relationships with our members as we aspire to do more than simply transact. We are working to build valued, trusted relationships with our members by providing differentiated products and services that will be difficult for others to replicate.
Enhancing Our Financial Flexibility
As we previously stated, we are reconfiguring our asset base as we accelerate our transformation. In 2012, we separated our Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores business through a rights offering transaction. We consider this transaction to be successful as it:
generated approximately $450 million of gross proceeds for Sears Holdings;
did not reduce our overall scale, as our products and services are sold through their locations; and
allowed existing shareholders the right to participate in value creation generated by Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores.
We recently announced that we intend to separate Lands' End and are exploring strategic alternatives for our Sears Auto Centers business. We believe that these strategic actions are beneficial for a number of reasons:
First, Sears Holdings becomes a more focused company that is more efficient to manage and easier to understand;

23


Second, the management of these separated businesses are better able to pursue their own strategic opportunities, optimize their capital structures, attract talent, and allocate capital in a more focused manner;
Third, they provide multiple opportunities for our shareholders to participate in the value creation generated by these businesses; and
Finally, they potentially enhance Sears Holdings’ and the separated entities’ financial flexibility.
We believe that we can readily generate liquidity from our asset base. In fact, in 2013 we generated $2.0 billion of liquidity consisting of $1.0 billion through real estate transactions in the United States and Canada and another $1.0 billion, as we executed a five-year secured term loan in October 2013. We expect to continue with these types of activities during 2014. We currently anticipate generating about $500 million from an exit dividend in connection with the previously announced separation of Lands' End through a pro rata distribution to our shareholders, with the separation being subject to certain conditions. We currently expect that the combination of (1) the Lands' End transaction, (2) our continuing to work with the board and management of Sears Canada to increase the value of our investment, which has a market value as of March 14, 2014 of about $760 million, and realize significant cash proceeds and (3) our evaluation of opportunities with respect to a potential separation of our Sears Auto Centers when taken together will result in cash proceeds to the Company in excess of $1.0 billion in 2014, which will help fund our transformation and create value.
RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
Fiscal Year
Our fiscal year end is the Saturday closest to January 31 each year. Fiscal years 2013 and 2011 consisted of 52 weeks while fiscal year 2012 consisted of 53 weeks. Unless otherwise stated, references to years in this report relate to fiscal years rather than to calendar years. The following fiscal periods are presented in this report.
Fiscal year
Ended
 
Weeks
2013
February 1, 2014
 
52
2012
February 2, 2013
 
53
2011
January 28, 2012
 
52

24


Holdings' Consolidated Results
Holdings' consolidated results of operations for 2013, 2012 and 2011 are summarized as follows:
millions, except per share data
 
2013
 
2012
 
2011
REVENUES
 
 
 
 
 
 
Merchandise sales and services
 
$
36,188

 
$
39,854

 
$
41,567

COSTS AND EXPENSES
 
 
 
 
 
 
Cost of sales, buying and occupancy
 
27,433

 
29,340

 
30,966

Gross margin dollars
 
8,755

 
10,514

 
10,601

Gross margin rate
 
24.2
%
 
26.4
%
 
25.5
%
Selling and administrative
 
9,384

 
10,660

 
10,664

Selling and administrative expense as a percentage of revenues
 
25.9
%
 
26.7
%
 
25.7
%
Depreciation and amortization
 
732

 
830

 
853

Impairment charges
 
233

 
330

 
649

Gain on sales of assets
 
(667
)
 
(468
)
 
(64
)
Total costs and expenses
 
37,115

 
40,692

 
43,068

Operating loss
 
(927
)
 
(838
)
 
(1,501
)
Interest expense
 
(254
)
 
(267
)
 
(289
)
Interest and investment income
 
207

 
94

 
41

Other income (loss)
 
2

 
1

 
(2
)
Loss from continuing operations before income taxes
 
(972
)
 
(1,010
)
 
(1,751
)
Income tax expense
 
(144
)
 
(44
)
 
(1,369
)
Loss from continuing operations
 
(1,116
)
 
(1,054
)
 
(3,120
)
Loss from discontinued operations, net of tax
 

 

 
(27
)
Net loss
 
(1,116
)
 
(1,054
)
 
(3,147
)
(Income) loss attributable to noncontrolling interests
 
(249
)
 
124

 
7

NET LOSS ATTRIBUTABLE TO HOLDINGS’ SHAREHOLDERS
 
$
(1,365
)
 
$
(930
)
 
$
(3,140
)
Amounts attributable to Holdings’ shareholders:
 
 
 
 
 
 
Loss from continuing operations, net of tax
 
$
(1,365
)
 
$
(930
)
 
$
(3,113
)
Loss from discontinued operations, net of tax
 

 

 
(27
)
Net loss
 
$
(1,365
)
 
$
(930
)
 
$
(3,140
)
NET LOSS PER COMMON SHARE ATTRIBUTABLE TO HOLDINGS’ SHAREHOLDERS
 
 
 
 
 
 
Diluted loss per share from continuing operations
 
$
(12.87
)
 
$
(8.78
)
 
$
(29.15
)
Diluted loss per share from discontinued operations
 

 

 
(0.25
)
 
 
$
(12.87
)
 
$
(8.78
)
 
$
(29.40
)
Diluted weighted average common shares outstanding
 
106.1

 
105.9

 
106.8


25


References to comparable store sales amounts within the following discussion include sales for all stores operating for a period of at least 12 full months, including remodeled and expanded stores, but excluding store relocations and stores that have undergone format changes. Domestic comparable store sales amounts include sales from sears.com and kmart.com shipped directly to customers. These online sales resulted in a benefit of approximately 60 basis points and 30 basis points, respectively, for 2013 and 2012. In addition, domestic comparable store sales have been adjusted for the change in the unshipped sales reserves recorded at the end of each reporting period, which resulted in a positive impact of approximately 10 basis points for 2013 and no impact in 2012.
As previously noted, fiscal 2013 was comprised of the 52-week period ended February 1, 2014, while fiscal 2012 was comprised of the 53-week period ended February 2, 2013. This one week shift had no impact on the domestic comparable store sales results reported herein due to the fact that for purposes of reporting domestic comparable store sales results for 2013, weeks one through 52 for fiscal 2013 have been compared to weeks two through 53 for fiscal year 2012, thereby eliminating the impact of the one week shift. Domestic comparable store sales results for 2012 were calculated based on the 52-week period ended January 26, 2013 as compared to the comparable 52-week period in the prior year.
2013 Compared to 2012
Net Loss Attributable to Holdings' Shareholders
We recorded a net loss attributable to Holdings' shareholders of $1.4 billion ($12.87 loss per diluted share) and $930 million ($8.78 loss per diluted share) for 2013 and 2012, respectively. Our results for 2013 and 2012 were affected by a number of significant items. Our net loss as adjusted for these significant items was $700 million ($6.60 loss per diluted share) for 2013 and $266 million ($2.51 loss per diluted share) for 2012. The increase in net loss for the year reflected a decline in gross margin, which resulted from both a decline in revenues as well as a decline in gross margin rate of 220 basis points, partially offset by a decrease in selling and administrative expenses.
In addition to our net loss from continuing operations determined in accordance with GAAP, for purposes of evaluating operating performance, we use an Adjusted Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization ("Adjusted EBITDA") measurement as well as Adjusted Earnings per Share ("Adjusted EPS").
Adjusted EBITDA is computed as net loss attributable to Sears Holdings Corporation appearing on the Statements of Operations excluding income (loss) attributable to noncontrolling interests, income tax expense, interest expense, interest and investment income, other income (loss), depreciation and amortization and gain on sales of assets. In addition, it is adjusted to exclude certain significant items as set forth below. Our management uses Adjusted EBITDA to evaluate the operating performance of our businesses, as well as executive compensation metrics, for comparable periods. Adjusted EBITDA should not be used by investors or other third parties as the sole basis for formulating investment decisions as it excludes a number of important cash and non-cash recurring items.
While Adjusted EBITDA is a non-GAAP measurement, management believes that it is an important indicator of ongoing operating performance, and useful to investors, because:
EBITDA excludes the effects of financings and investing activities by eliminating the effects of interest and depreciation costs;
Management considers gains/(losses) on the sale of assets to result from investing decisions rather than ongoing operations; and
Other significant items, while periodically affecting our results, may vary significantly from period to period and have a disproportionate effect in a given period, which affects comparability of results. Adjustments to EBITDA include impairment charges related to fixed assets and intangible assets, pension settlements, closed store and severance charges, domestic pension expense, transaction costs, hurricane losses and the SHO separation. We have adjusted our results for these items to make our statements more comparable and therefore more useful to investors as the items are not representative of our ongoing operations and reflect past investment decisions.

26


Adjusted EBITDA was determined as follows:
millions
2013
 
2012
 
2011
Net loss attributable to SHC per statement of operations
$
(1,365
)
 
$
(930
)
 
$
(3,140
)
Income (loss) attributable to noncontrolling interests
249

 
(124
)
 
(7
)
Loss from discontinued operations, net of tax

 

 
27

Income tax expense
144

 
44

 
1,369

Interest expense
254

 
267

 
289

Interest and investment income
(207
)
 
(94
)
 
(41
)
Other (income) loss
(2
)
 
(1
)
 
2

Operating loss
(927
)
 
(838
)
 
(1,501
)
Depreciation and amortization
732

 
830

 
853

Gain on sales of assets
(667
)
 
(468
)
 
(64
)
Before excluded items
(862
)
 
(476
)
 
(712
)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Impairment charges
233

 
330

 
649

Domestic pension expense
162

 
165

 
74

Closed store reserve, severance and other
130

 
140

 
254

Pension settlements

 
455

 

Transaction costs

 
12

 

Hurricane losses

 

 
12

Adjusted EBITDA
(337
)
 
626

 
277

 
 
 
 
 
 
SHO Separation

 
(90
)
 
(81
)
Adjusted EBITDA as defined
$
(337
)
 
$
536

 
$
196

% to revenues
(0.9
)%
 
1.4
%
 
0.5
%
Adjusted EBITDA for our segments was as follows:
 
2013
 
2012
 
2011
millions
Kmart
Sears Domestic
Sears Canada
Sears Holdings
 
Kmart
Sears Domestic
Sears Canada
Sears Holdings
 
Kmart
Sears Domestic
Sears Canada
Sears Holdings
Operating income (loss) per statement of operations
$
(351
)
$
(940
)
$
364

$
(927
)
 
$
5

$
(656
)
$
(187
)
$
(838
)
 
$
(34
)
$
(1,447
)
$
(20
)
$
(1,501
)
Depreciation and amortization
129

511

92

732

 
147

578

105

830

 
149

601

103

853

Gain on sales of assets
(66
)
(63
)
(538
)
(667
)
 
(37
)
(261
)
(170
)
(468
)
 
(34
)
(30
)

(64
)
Before excluded items
(288
)
(492
)
(82
)
(862
)
 
115

(339
)
(252
)
(476
)
 
81

(876
)
83

(712
)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Impairment charges
70

150

13

233

 
10

25

295

330

 
15

634


649

Domestic pension expense

162


162

 

165


165

 

74


74

Closed store reserve, severance and other
89

(31
)
72

130

 
76

44

20

140

 
76

160

18

254

Pension settlements




 

452

3

455

 




Transaction costs




 

9

3

12

 




Hurricane losses




 




 

12


12

Adjusted EBITDA
(129
)
(211
)
3

(337
)
 
201

356

69

626

 
172

4

101

277

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
SHO Separation




 

(90
)

(90
)
 

(81
)

(81
)
Adjusted EBITDA as defined
$
(129
)
$
(211
)
$
3

$
(337
)
 
$
201

$
266

$
69

$
536

 
$
172

$
(77
)
$
101

$
196

% to revenues
(1.0
)%
(1.1
)%
0.1
%
(0.9
)%
 
1.4
%
1.4
%
1.6
%
1.4
%
 
1.1
%
(0.4
)%
2.2
%
0.5
%

27


These other significant items included in Adjusted EBITDA are further explained as follows:
Impairment charges – Accounting standards require the Company to evaluate the carrying value of fixed assets, goodwill and intangible assets for impairment. As a result of the Company’s analysis, we have recorded impairment charges related to certain fixed asset and goodwill balances.
Pension settlements – The Company amended its domestic pension plan and offered a one-time voluntary lump sum payment option in an effort to reduce its long-term pension obligations and ongoing annual pension expense. The pension settlements were funded from existing pension plan assets. In connection with this transaction, the Company incurred a charge to operations as a result of the requirement to expense the unrealized actuarial losses. The charge had no effect on equity because the unrealized actuarial losses are already recognized in accumulated other comprehensive income/(loss). Accordingly, the effect on retained earnings was offset by a corresponding reduction in accumulated other comprehensive loss.
Closed store reserve and severance – We are transforming our Company to a less asset-intensive business model. Throughout this transformation, we continue to make choices related to our stores, which could result in sales, closures, lease terminations or a variety of other decisions.
Domestic pension expense – Contributions to our pension plans remain a significant use of our cash on an annual basis. Cash contributions to our pension and postretirement plans are separately disclosed on the cash flow statement. While the Company's pension plan is frozen, and thus associates do not currently earn pension benefits, we have a legacy pension obligation for past service performed by Kmart and Sears associates. The annual pension expense included in our statement of operations related to these legacy domestic pension plans was relatively minimal in years prior to 2009. However, due to the severe decline in the capital markets that occurred in the latter part of 2008, our domestic pension expense was $162 million in 2013, $165 million in 2012 and $74 million in 2011. Pension expense is comprised of interest cost, expected return on plan assets and amortization of experience losses. This adjustment eliminates the entire pension expense from the statement of operations to improve comparability. Pension expense is included in the determination of Net Income. The components of the adjustments to EBITDA related to domestic pension expense were as follows:
millions
2013
 
2012
 
2011
Components of net periodic expense:
 
 
 
 
 
Interest cost
$
219

 
$
291

 
$
313

Expected return on plan assets
(224
)
 
(291
)
 
(302
)
Amortization of experience losses
167

 
165

 
63

Net periodic expense
$
162

 
$
165

 
$
74

In accordance with U.S. GAAP, we recognize on the balance sheet actuarial gains and losses for defined benefit pension plans annually in the fourth quarter of each fiscal year and whenever a plan is determined to qualify for a remeasurement during a fiscal year. For income statement purposes, these actuarial gains and losses are recognized throughout the year through an amortization process. The Company recognizes in its results of operations, as a corridor adjustment, any unrecognized actuarial net gains or losses that exceed 10% of the larger of projected benefit obligations or plan assets. Accumulated gains/losses that are inside the 10% corridor are not recognized, while accumulated actuarial gains/losses that are outside the 10% corridor are amortized over the "average future service" of the population and are included in the amortization of experience losses line item above.
Actuarial gains and losses occur when actual experience differs from the estimates used to allocate the change in value of pension plans to expense throughout the year or when assumptions change, as they may each year. Significant factors that can contribute to the recognition of actuarial gains and losses include changes in discount rates used to remeasure pension obligations on an annual basis or upon a qualifying remeasurement, differences between actual and expected returns on plan assets and other changes in actuarial assumptions. Management believes these actuarial gains and losses are primarily financing activities that are more reflective of changes in current conditions in global financial markets

28


(and in particular interest rates) that are not directly related to the underlying business and that do not have an immediate, corresponding impact on the benefits provided to eligible retirees. For further information on the actuarial assumptions and plan assets referenced above, see Management's Discussion &Analysis - Application of Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates - Defined Benefit Pension Plans, and Note 7 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.

SHO separation – The results of the Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses that were included in our results of operations prior to the separation.

The following tables set forth results of operations on a GAAP and "As Adjusted" basis, as well as the impact each significant item used in calculating Adjusted EBITDA had on specific income and expense amounts reported in our Consolidated Statements of Operations during the years 2013, 2012 and 2011.
 
Year Ended February 1, 2014
millions, except per share data
GAAP
Domestic
Pension
Expense
Closed Store Reserve, Store Impairments, Severance and Other
Gain on Sales of Assets
Gain on Sale of Canadian Joint Venture
Tax Matters
As
Adjusted
Gross margin impact
$
8,755

$

$
57

$

$

$

$
8,812

Selling and administrative impact
9,384

(162
)
(73
)



9,149

Depreciation and amortization impact
732


(11
)



721

Impairment charges impact
233


(233
)




Gain on sales of assets impact
(667
)


604



(63
)
Operating loss impact
(927
)
162

374

(604
)


(995
)
Interest and investment income impact
207




(163
)

44

Income tax expense impact
(144
)
(60
)
(141
)
228

61

507

451

Income attributable to noncontrolling interests impact
(249
)

(42
)
263

80


52

After tax and noncontrolling interests impact
(1,365
)
102

191

(113
)
(22
)
507

(700
)
Diluted loss per share impact
$
(12.87
)
$
0.96

$
1.80

$
(1.06
)
$
(0.21
)
$
4.78

$
(6.60
)











29


 
Year Ended February 2, 2013
millions, except per share data
GAAP
Domestic
Pension
Expense
Closed Store Reserve, Store Impairments and Severance
Gain on Sales of Assets
Transaction Costs
Goodwill Impairment
Pension Settlements
Gain on Sale of Canadian Joint Venture
Tax Matters
As Adjusted - Reported
SHO Separation
As Adjusted(1)
Gross margin impact
$
10,514

$

$
35

$

$

$

$

$

$

$
10,549

$
(432
)
$
10,117

Selling and administrative impact
10,660

(165
)
(105
)

(12
)

(455
)


9,923

(343
)
9,580

Depreciation and amortization impact
830


(22
)






808

(6
)
802

Impairment charges impact
330


(35
)


(295
)






Gain on sales of assets impact
(468
)


419






(49
)

(49
)
Operating loss impact
(838
)
165

197

(419
)
12

295

455



(133
)
(83
)
(216
)
Interest and investment income impact
94







(25
)

69


69

Income tax expense impact
(44
)
(62
)
(74
)
157

(5
)


9

143

124

33

157

Loss attributable to noncontrolling interests impact
124


(7
)
8


(145
)
(1
)
12


(9
)

(9
)
After tax and noncontrolling interests impact
(930
)
103

116

(254
)
7

150

454

(4
)
143

(215
)
(51
)
(266
)
Diluted loss per share impact
$
(8.78
)
$
0.97

$
1.09

$
(2.40
)
$
0.07

$
1.42

$
4.29

$
(0.04
)
$
1.35

$
(2.03
)
$
(0.48
)
$
(2.51
)
(1) Adjusted to reflect the results of the Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses that were included in our results of operations prior to the separation.
 
Year Ended January 28, 2012
millions, except per share data
GAAP
Domestic
Pension
Expense
Closed Store
Reserve, Store Impairments and
Severance
Mark-to-Market Losses
Gain on Sales of Assets
Hurricane Losses
Goodwill Impairment
Tax Matters
Discontinued Operations
As Adjusted - Reported
SHO Separation
As Adjusted(1)
Gross margin impact
$
10,601

$

$
130

$

$

$

$


$

$
10,731

$
(524
)
$
10,207

Selling and administrative impact
10,664

(74
)
(124
)


(12
)



10,454

(459
)
9,995

Depreciation and amortization impact
853


(8
)






845

(10
)
835

Impairment charges impact
649


(98
)



(551
)





Gain on sales of assets impact
(64
)



33





(31
)

(31
)
Operating loss impact
(1,501
)
74

360


(33
)
12

551



(537
)
(55
)
(592
)
Other loss impact
(2
)


6






4


4

Income tax expense impact
(1,369
)
(28
)
(134
)
(2
)
13

(5
)

1,819


294

22

316

Loss from discontinued operations, net of tax impact
(27
)







27




Loss attributable to noncontrolling interest impact
7


(1
)
(1
)





5


5

After tax and noncontrolling interest impact
(3,140
)
46

225

3

(20
)
7

551

1,819

27

(482
)
(33
)
(515
)
Diluted loss per share impact
$
(29.40
)
$
0.43

$
2.10

$
0.03

$
(0.19
)
$
0.07

$
5.16

$
17.03

$
0.25

$
(4.52
)
$
(0.31
)
$
(4.83
)
(1) Adjusted to reflect the results of the Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses that were included in our results of operations prior to the separation.
We also believe that our use of Adjusted EPS provides an appropriate measure for investors to use in assessing our performance across periods, given that this measure provides an adjustment for certain significant items which may vary significantly from period to period, improving the comparability of year-to-year results and is therefore representative of our ongoing performance. Therefore, we have adjusted our results for them to make our statements more useful and comparable. However, we do not, and do not recommend that you, solely use Adjusted EPS to assess our financial and earnings performance. We also use, and recommend that you use, diluted earnings per share in addition to Adjusted EPS in assessing our earnings performance.

30


In addition to the significant items included in the Adjusted EBITDA calculation, Adjusted EPS includes the following other significant items which, while periodically affecting our results, may vary significantly from period to period and have a disproportionate effect in a given period, and affects comparability of results.
Gains on sales of assets - We have recorded significant gains on sales of assets which were primarily attributable to several real estate transactions. Management considers these gains on sale of assets to result from investing decisions rather than ongoing operations.
Tax Matters - In 2011, and again in 2013, we recorded a non-cash charge to establish a valuation allowance against substantially all of our domestic deferred tax assets. Accounting rules generally require that a valuation reserve be established when income has not been generated over a three-year cumulative period to support the deferred tax asset. While an accounting loss was recorded, we believe no economic loss has occurred as these net operating losses and tax benefits remain available to reduce future taxes as income is generated in subsequent periods. As this valuation allowance has a significant impact on the effective tax rate, we have adjusted our results to reflect a standard effective tax rate for the Company beginning in fiscal 2011 when the valuation allowance was first established.
Revenues and Comparable Store Sales
Revenues decreased $3.7 billion, or 9.2%, to $36.2 billion in 2013, as compared to revenues of $39.9 billion in 2012. The revenue decrease was primarily due to the effect of having fewer Kmart and Sears Full-line stores in operation, which accounted for approximately $1.1 billion of the decline, as well as lower domestic comparable store sales, which accounted for approximately $1.0 billion of the decline. Revenues for the year were also impacted by approximately $490 million attributable to the separation of SHO, which occurred in the third quarter of 2012. The prior year first nine months, which included the separation of SHO, included revenues of approximately $1.7 billion related to SHO merchandise sales to its customers, as well as $70 million for merchandise sold to SHO for resale which occurred after the separation. The first nine months of 2013, included revenues from SHO of approximately $1.3 billion, primarily related to merchandise sold to SHO for resale. Fiscal 2012 also benefited from approximately $500 million of revenue attributable to the 53rd week. Sears Canada had a 2.7% decline in comparable store sales during 2013, which accounted for approximately $85 million of the decline. In addition, Sears Canada revenues experienced declines in 2013 of approximately $150 million as a result of a new licensing arrangement related to the Sears Home Improvements Product Services ("SHIPS"), and approximately $70 million due to the closure of four Full-line stores in Sears Canada that occurred in 2012. Finally, Sears Canada revenues in 2013 included a decrease of $157 million due to foreign currency exchange rates.
Domestic comparable store sales declined 3.8%, comprised of decreases of 3.6% at Kmart and 4.1% at Sears Domestic. The decline at Kmart reflects declines in a majority of categories, most notably grocery & household, consumer electronics, drugstore and toys. The decline at Sears Domestic reflects decreases in most categories including the home appliances, consumer electronics, tools and lawn & garden categories, as well as declines at Sears Auto Centers, partially offset by increases in the home and footwear categories.
Gross Margin
Gross margin declined $1.8 billion to $8.8 billion in 2013 from $10.5 billion in 2012 due to the above noted decline in revenues, as well as a decline in gross margin rate. Gross margin included expenses of $57 million and $35 million in 2013 and 2012, respectively, related to store closings, while 2012 also included gross margin of $432 million from SHO. Excluding these items, gross margin decreased $1.3 billion. In addition, Sears Canada's gross margin for 2013 included a decrease of $42 million related to the impact of foreign currency exchange rates.
The gross margin rate for both Kmart and Sears Domestic for the year were impacted by transactions that offer both traditional promotional marketing discounts and Shop Your Way points. As compared to the prior year, Kmart's gross margin rate for 2013 declined 170 basis points, with decreases experienced in a majority of categories, particularly apparel and grocery & household. Sears Domestic's gross margin rate declined 260 basis points in 2013 due to selling merchandise to SHO at cost pursuant to the terms of the separation as expected and previously disclosed, which accounted for approximately 120 basis points of the decline. Sears Domestic experienced margin decreases in the home appliances and apparel categories. Sears Canada's gross margin rate declined 190 basis points in 2013 due to an increase in inventory reserve requirements.

31


Selling and Administrative Expenses
Selling and administrative expenses decreased $1.3 billion to $9.4 billion in 2013 from $10.7 billion in 2012 and included expenses related to pension plans, store closings and severance of $235 million and $725 million in 2013 and 2012, respectively. The prior year also included selling and administrative expense of $343 million related to SHO and $12 million of transaction costs associated with strategic initiatives. Excluding these items, selling and administrative expenses declined $431 million primarily due to a decrease in payroll expense. Selling and administrative expenses at Sears Canada for 2013 included a decrease of $45 million related to the impact of foreign currency exchange rates.
Selling and administrative expenses as a percentage of revenues ("selling and administrative expense rate") were 25.9% and 26.7% for 2013 and 2012, respectively, and decreased primarily as the decrease in overall selling and administrative expenses were partially offset by lower expense leverage due to the above noted decline in revenues.
Depreciation and Amortization
Depreciation and amortization expense decreased by $98 million during 2013 to $732 million and included charges of $11 million and $22 million in 2013 and 2012, respectively, taken in connection with store closings. The prior year also included depreciation and amortization expense of $6 million related to SHO. The decrease in 2013 is primarily due to having fewer assets available for depreciation.
Impairment Charges
We recorded impairment charges of $233 million and $35 million in 2013 and 2012, respectively, related to the impairment of long-lived assets. During 2012, we also recorded impairment charges of $295 million related to the impairment of goodwill. Impairment charges recorded in both years are described further in Notes 12 and 13 in Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.
Gain on Sales of Assets
We recorded total gains on sales of assets of $667 million in 2013 and $468 million in 2012, which were primarily attributable to several real estate transactions.
The gain on sales of assets in 2013 included a gain of $180 million recognized on the amendment and early termination of the leases on two properties operated by Sears Canada, for which Sears Canada received $184 million ($191 million Canadian) in cash proceeds. We also recorded a gain on sales of assets of $357 million in 2013 recognized on the surrender and early termination of the leases of five properties operated by Sears Canada, for which Sears Canada received $381 million ($400 million Canadian) in cash proceeds. Finally, gain on sales of assets in 2013 also included a gain of $67 million related to the sale of a store previously operated under The Great Indoors format, two Sears Full-line stores and two Kmart stores for which the Company received $98 million in cash proceeds.
The gain on sales of assets in 2012 included a gain of $223 million recognized on the sale of eleven (six owned and five leased) Sears Full-line store locations to General Growth Properties for $270 million in cash proceeds, and a gain of $163 million recognized on the surrender and early termination of the leases on three properties operated by Sears Canada, under an agreement with The Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited for which Sears Canada received $171 million ($170 million Canadian) in cash proceeds. Gain on sales of assets recorded in 2012 also included a gain of $33 million related to the sale of a store operated under The Great Indoors format, one Sears Full-line store and one Kmart store.
Operating Loss
We recorded an operating loss of $927 million and $838 million in 2013 and 2012, respectively. Operating loss for 2013 included non-cash charges related to domestic pension plans, store closings, store impairments and severance, as well as the gains on sales of assets which aggregated to operating income of $68 million. Operating loss for 2012 included non-cash charges related to pension settlements and the impairment of Sears Canada goodwill balances, expenses related to domestic pension plans, store closings, store impairments, severance and transaction

32


costs, as well as the gains on sales of assets and operating income from SHO, which all aggregated to an operating loss of $622 million. Excluding these items, operating loss increased $779 million in 2013 compared to 2012 primarily due to the above noted declines in revenues and gross margin rate, which were partially offset by a decline in selling and administrative expenses.
Interest Expense
We incurred $254 million and $267 million in interest expense during 2013 and 2012, respectively. The decrease is due to a lower average interest rate on outstanding borrowings in 2013.
Interest and Investment Income
We recorded interest and investment income of $207 million and $94 million during 2013 and 2012, respectively. During 2013, investment income included a gain of $163 million related to the sale of 50% joint venture interests in eight properties Sears Canada owned with The Westcliff Group of Companies, for which Sears Canada received $270 million ($297 million Canadian) in cash proceeds.
Income Taxes
Our effective tax rate for 2013 was 14.8% compared to 4.4% in 2012. Our tax rate in 2013 continues to reflect the effect of not recognizing the benefit of current period losses in certain domestic jurisdictions where it is not more likely than not that such benefits would be realized. The 2013 rate was impacted unfavorably by an additional valuation allowance on state separate entity deferred tax assets and favorably for the lower tax on the Sears Canada gain on sales of assets, federal and state tax audit settlements and statute expirations. In addition, the 2013 rate included a partial tax benefit on the loss from continuing operations, which was exactly offset by income tax expense on other comprehensive income.
2012 Compared to 2011
Net Loss from Continuing Operations Attributable to Holdings' Shareholders
We recorded a net loss from continuing operations attributable to Holdings' shareholders of $930 million ($8.78 loss per diluted share from continuing operations) and $3.1 billion ($29.15 loss per diluted share from continuing operations) for 2012 and 2011, respectively. Our results for 2012 and 2011 were affected by a number of significant items, including non-cash charges related to pension settlements and the impairment of goodwill balances and a $1.8 billion non-cash charge to establish a valuation allowance against our domestic deferred tax assets in 2011. Our net loss from continuing operations as adjusted for these significant items was $215 million ($2.03 loss per diluted share from continuing operations) for 2012 and $482 million ($4.52 loss per diluted share from continuing operations) for 2011. The improvement in net loss for the year reflected an improvement in gross margin rate of 90 basis points and a decrease in selling and administrative expenses, which were partially offset by a decline in gross margin dollars, given lower sales.
Revenues and Comparable Store Sales
Revenues decreased $1.7 billion, or 4.1%, to $39.9 billion, as compared to revenues of $41.6 billion in 2011. The decline in revenue was primarily the result of having fewer Kmart and Sears Full-line stores in operation, which accounted for approximately $930 million of the decline, a decrease in domestic comparable store sales of 2.5%, which accounted for approximately $740 million of the decline, and the separation of the Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses, partially offset by the inclusion of an additional week of revenues in 2012. The Company recorded approximately $500 million of revenues during the 53rd week of 2012. The separation of the Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses resulted in a net decrease in revenues of approximately $100 million. Additionally, Sears Canada had a 5.6% decline in comparable store sales, which accounted for approximately $185 million of the decline, and revenues for the year included a decrease of $37 million due to changes in foreign currency exchange rates.
Domestic comparable store sales declined 2.5% with declines of 1.4% at Sears Domestic and 3.7% at Kmart. Excluding the consumer electronics category, total domestic comparable store sales decreased 1.4% with Sears Domestic decreasing only 0.1% and Kmart decreasing 2.8%.
The decline in comparable store sales of 1.4% at Sears Domestic was driven by decreases in consumer electronics, lawn and garden and home appliances as well as at Sears Auto Centers. These decreases were partially offset by increases in apparel and home. The Kmart decline in comparable store sales of 3.7% reflects decreases in a majority of its categories, most notably the consumer electronics, pharmacy, grocery and household and drug store categories.
Gross Margin
Gross margin declined $87 million to $10.5 billion in 2012 from $10.6 billion in 2011 and included charges of $35 million and $130 million related to store closures for 2012 and 2011, respectively. Excluding these items, gross margin declined $182 million as the above noted decline in revenues was only partially offset by an improvement in gross margin rate. In addition, Sears Canada's gross margin included a decrease of $11 million related to the impact of foreign currency exchange rates.
Sears Domestic's gross margin rate improved 120 basis points in 2012 primarily due to improved margins in the apparel, home appliance and footwear categories, which were partially offset by declines in the consumer electronics category and the Lands' End customer direct business. Kmart’s gross margin rate improved 70 basis points in 2012 due to the improvement in the apparel, pharmacy and toys categories, which were partially offset by a decline in the consumer electronics category. Sears Canada’s gross margin rate decreased 10 basis points in 2012 due to declines in the fitness and recreation, children's wear, jewelry, accessories and luggage and footwear categories.

33


Selling and Administrative Expenses
Selling and administrative expenses for 2012 were flat with the prior year and included expenses related to pension plans, store closings and severance of $725 million in 2012 and $198 million in 2011. The current year also included $12 million of transaction costs associated with strategic initiatives while 2011 included expense of $12 million related to hurricane losses in 2011. Excluding these items, selling and administrative expenses declined $531 million due to reductions in advertising, supplies and payroll expenses. Selling and administrative expenses at Sears Canada for 2012 included a decrease of $10 million related to the impact of foreign currency exchange rates.
Selling and administrative expense rate was 26.7% and 25.7% for 2012 and 2011, respectively, and increased primarily as a result of the above noted charges.
Depreciation and Amortization
Depreciation and amortization expense decreased by $23 million during 2012 to $830 million and included charges of $22 million and $8 million in 2012 and 2011, respectively, taken in connection with store closings. The decrease is primarily due to having fewer assets available for depreciation.
Impairment Charges
During 2012, we recorded impairment charges of $295 million and $35 million related to the impairment of goodwill and long-lived assets, respectively. We also recorded impairment charges during 2011 of $551 million and $98 million related to the impairment of goodwill and long-lived assets, respectively. Impairment charges recorded in both years are described further in Notes 12 and 13 in Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.
Gain on Sales of Assets
We recorded total gains on sales of assets of $468 million in 2012 and $64 million in 2011, which were primarily attributable to several real estate transactions. The gain on sale of assets in 2012 included a gain of $223 million recognized on the sale of eleven (six owned and five leased) Sears Full-line store locations to General Growth Properties for $270 million in cash proceeds, and a gain of $163 million recognized on the surrender and early termination of the leases on three properties operated by Sears Canada, under an agreement with The Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited for which Sears Canada received $171 million ($170 million Canadian) in cash proceeds. Gain on sales of assets recorded in 2012 also included a gain of $33 million related to the sale of a store operated under The Great Indoors format, one Sears Full-line store and one Kmart store. During 2011, the gain on sales of assets included a gain of $21 million recognized on the sale of two stores operated under The Great Indoors format and $12 million recognized on the sale of a store operated under the Kmart format.
Operating Loss
We recorded an operating loss of $838 million and $1.5 billion in 2012 and 2011, respectively. Operating loss for 2012 included non-cash charges related to pension settlements and the impairment of Sears Canada goodwill balances, expenses related to domestic pension plans, store closings and store impairments and severance and transaction costs, as well as the gains on sales of assets which aggregated to an operating loss of $705 million. Operating loss for 2011 included a non-cash charge of $551 million related to goodwill balances of certain reporting units, expenses related to domestic pension plans, store closings, severance and hurricane losses and a net gain on the sales of assets which aggregated to an operating loss of $964 million. Excluding these items, operating loss improved $404 million primarily due to the improvement in gross margin rate and a decrease in selling and administrative expenses, which were partially offset by a decline in gross margin dollars, given lower sales.
Interest Expense
We incurred $267 million and $289 million in interest expense during 2012 and 2011, respectively. The decrease is due to lower average outstanding borrowings.

34


Income Taxes
Our income tax effective rate was 4.4% in 2012 and 78.2% in 2011. The 2012 tax rate continues to reflect the effect of not recognizing the benefit of current period losses in certain domestic jurisdictions where it is not more likely than not that such benefits will be realized. The prior year tax rate is the result of significant tax matters in 2011 which included a non-cash charge of $1.8 billion to establish a valuation allowance against certain deferred income tax assets.
Business Segment Results
Kmart
Kmart results and key statistics were as follows: