Lamperts Looking to Real Estate
By George Anderson
For many in and around the retailing business, the name Lampert connected to real estate for sale automatically brings to mind Edward Lampert, the chairman of Sears Holding, and his history of selling off company real estate assets to bolster Kmart’s bottom line.
This particular story, however, has nothing to do with Sears, Kmart or Edward Lampert. According to a report in The Business Journal of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Lamperts is an expanding chain of retail lumber stores that is seeking to sell up to 49 percent of the land those units sit on to finance new store development.
President and owner Dan Fessler said this was a new approach for the 37-store chain, but one that should increase the stake employees have in the company’s performance. “We currently own all our own real estate, and we thought it would be advantageous for both ourselves and our employees to try this,” he said.
The retailer plans to build an additional 10 stores over the next five years at a cost of up to $5 million for each unit. “If you can share some of that cost with someone else,
it allows us to build more with the same nickel,” said Mr. Fessler.
Moderator’s Comment: What do you think of Lamperts’ plan of selling land to employees to help finance company growth?
We bet Kmart employees wish they had this deal before their own Lampert began selling off property. –
George Anderson – Moderator