Hedge-Fund Ownership Cost Sears Workers Their Jobs. Now They’re Fighting Back.
Laid-off retail workers are demanding severance, labor protections—and an end to the Wall Street playbook of owning a company while hollowing it out.
In 2005, the hedge fund ESL Investments Inc., owned by Eddie Lampert, took over the company. In the 1990s, Sears struggled to keep up with big-box competitors Walmart and Kmart and to compete with online retailers. When Lampert took over, he focused on reducing costs and increasing shareholder returns.
Sears is now defunct, having declared bankruptcy.
This is capitalism at its worst.