Kmart Corporation

Essay by StevenLamUniversity, Bachelor'sA, November 2008

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Attention Kmart shoppers, all 180 million of you! Kmart Corporation is the second largest discount retailer in the nation and third largest general merchandise retailer. Kmart's primary lines of business are name brand and private label general merchandise with approximately 2,161 stores, including 100 Super Kmart Centers. Kmart has a retail presence in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam. Kmart owns 110 stores and leases approximately 2,051 stores. Kmart's primary competitors from the discount retail sector include Wal-mart, Target, Shopko and Costco. From the department store sector, J.C Penny and Sears are the main competitors. The primary factors in maintaining a competitive advantage are price, quality, service, product mix and convenience.

Kmart stores are generally one-floor, freestanding units ranging from 40,000 to 180,000 square feet. Kmart's diversification into specialty retailing brought it close to bankruptcy in 1995. Restructuring efforts have resulted in the conversion of many older stores into the Big Kmart format featuring grocery sections, brighter décor and an expanded selection of merchandise.

These stores feature an expanded selection of merchandise including private labels such as Martha Stewart, Sesame Street, Jaclyn Smith and Kathy Ireland. In addition, new marketing concepts featuring the TV celebrities Rosie O'Donnell and Penny Marshall are seen in almost every Kmart commercial.

The Super Kmart center is a new store prototype for the discount retailer that features a full assortment of groceries as well as a broad selection of general merchandise and apparel found at traditional Kmart stores. The offerings include fresh and frozen food, bakery and meats. There are also one-stop conveniences such as video rental, hair salons, florists, banking, and one-hour photo processing. The Super Kmart centers are open 24 hours a day and seven days a week. There were 102...