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Kmart

Kmart store signage is seen on the facade of a store in San Mateo, Calif. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

The Kmart store near Florissant will close as part of what the retailer said Thursday is its latest effort to cut costs by shutting down underperforming stores.

A liquidation sale will begin Sunday and the store, located at 2855 Dunn Road, will close in early December, Howard Riefs, a company spokesman, said in a statement.

About 100 employees, most hourly or part-time workers, are affected.

The store is just off West Florissant Avenue, about 2 miles north of the QuikTrip store that looters ransacked and burned after a Ferguson police officer shot and killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown on Aug. 9.

The store is within an 868.5-acre commercial and residential area Ferguson is proposing to annex. The Ferguson City Council approved the proposal in June, then submitted it to the St. Louis County Boundary Commission for consideration. If supported by the commission, the proposal would be submitted for approval by Ferguson voters and voters in the annexation area, which is north of Interstate 270.

Riefs said in an email that Kmart’s decision to close the Florissant store was “unrelated to any local events.”

“The store was underperforming,” he said.

The store opened in October 1998 in what had been a Venture store.

No other Kmart stores in the St. Louis area, Southern Illinois or the rest of Missouri are facing immediate closure, the company said. Earlier this year, Kmart announced closure of its stores in Collinsville and Ellisville.

Riefs said local announcements of the latest closures went out Tuesday, when news reports began circulating of Kmarts that will be shut down in Michigan and Illinois, including those in Peoria, Danville and Decatur.

“Store closures are part of a series of actions we’re taking to reduce ongoing expenses, adjust our asset base, and accelerate the transformation of our business model,” Riefs said. “These actions will better enable us to focus our investments on serving our customers and members through integrated retail — at the store, online and in the home.”

Kmart is part of Sears Holdings, which has been selling and spinning off assets to raise money. In August, the Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based company reported a second-quarter loss of $573 million, its ninth straight quarter of losses.

Riefs said the full list of the latest store closures would be released as part of Sears Holdings’ next quarterly earnings report, in November.

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Tim Bryant is a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.