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Sears stock tanks as CEO takes aim at vendors, saying: 'We will not simply roll over'

Key Points
  • Sears CEO Eddie Lampert writes in a blog post Monday: "Sears has nothing to be embarrassed about."
  • Lampert calls out one of Sears' vendors, One World.
  • One World is a China-based company that makes power tools for the Craftsman brand.
  • Lampert says the company will not "be taken advantage of."
Sears won't roll over for vendors

After lashing out at the media last week, Sears Holdings CEO Eddie Lampert is speaking out again, this time saying he is "taking a stand" to protect his company as its vendors have a change of heart.

"There have been examples of parties we do business with trying to take advantage of negative rumors about Sears to make themselves a better deal — a deal that is unilaterally in their interest," Lampert wrote in a blog post Monday.

This, as the embattled department store chain has been working with suppliers to try to ensure their level of credit risk is "both affordable and appropriate," Sears has said.

"In such a case, we will not simply roll over and be taken advantage of — we will do what's right to protect the interests of our company and the millions of stakeholders we serve," Lampert went on.

The CEO mentioned one of Sears' vendors that has been particularly troublesome of late: One World, a China-based subsidiary of Techtronic Industries that makes various power tools for Sears under the Craftsman brand.

Sears declines more rapidly than other department stores

Techtronic Industries wasn't immediately available for comment.

"For over nine years, One World has enjoyed significant benefits from its relationship with Sears — we have paid One World more than $868 million since 2007," Lampert wrote.

"If we allowed One World to break their agreement, it would effectively reduce the flow of products they are required to deliver to Sears, harming our ability to sell tools, supply parts, and provide goods to Sears' members and customers. We won't allow that to happen."

Sears' shares closed down more than 12 percent after Lampert's comments on Monday.

In an interview with the Chicago Tribune last week, Lampert had hinted that vendors were treating the company like a "pariah."

"We're fighting like hell to change the way people do business with us," he told the publication.

"Sears has nothing to be embarrassed about," Lampert followed up in his blog post Monday.

In March, Sears reignited fears about its future when the company disclosed there was "substantial doubt" about its ability to "continue as a going concern."

At the time, Sears said it remained focused on trying to improve its business, and said the language was simply its effort to adhere to regulatory standards.

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