Retail Refresh: Eight Nebraska Sears Hometown Stores Unveil New Appliance Strategy

Grand Reopening Celebrations to Unveil New Product Assortment, Redesigned Merchandising, Comprehensive Employee Training and More

KEARNEY, Neb., April 23, 2015 // GLOBE NEWSWIRE // - Evolving to meet changing consumer needs and to embrace its nationwide branding "America's Appliance Experts", the refresh of eight Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores in Nebraska culminates with a grand reopening celebration April 23-25, 2015 at the locations in Beatrice, Bellevue, Columbus, Fremont, Hastings, Kearney, McCook and North Platte. The store refresh includes a new product assortment, redesigned merchandising, new fixtures & signage, and comprehensive employee training, among other changes.

"This refresh allows our dedicated, local owners and employees to better serve their communities with an enhanced shopping experience, unmatched by any other retailer," said Russ Eihausen, district manager of Sears Hometown Stores in Nebraska. "Beyond physical changes to the sales floor and our expanded product offerings, customers can expect a whole new experience. Our specialized sales team have received comprehensive brand training on a wide range of brands and products, and are also equipped with tablets to more easily browse the sales floor while viewing more information, comparing products and finding similar appliances available online through Sears."

In the new store design, appliances will occupy more than half of the sales floor and include more brands with an improved presentation. The stores will also focus its appliances on innovative and value-added products from Whirlpool®, Maytag®, KitchenAid®, Samsung® and Kenmore®.

The new floor plan also includes the ability to showcase complete kitchen packages through the addition of three kitchen vignettes. This allows stores to display an entire four-piece kitchen from multiple brands in a small amount of floor space, making it easier for customers to choose products. Another new feature that simplifies the buying process is a designated laundry innovation area, showcasing multiple brands and innovations that lets customers easily explore the differences between the various product lines.

Customers in Nebraska also benefit from a new touch-screen kiosk where they can work with a salesperson or browse on their own to explore product options or make purchases. In addition, the Nebraska Sears Hometown Stores provide industry-leading, comprehensive training to store associates, including brand specific selling certification. These brand certified sales associates incorporate tablets when helping customers to ensure they find the best product for their needs at the best possible price. With the tablet, associates and customers can review product features and benefits as well as various models from the entire online database of Sears products - all while browsing models around the sales floor. Among major retailers, the Nebraska Sears Hometown Stores are leading the way for the integration of tablets into the sales process.

The initial 51 Sears Hometown Stores to be refreshed are located in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Texas and Vermont. To learn more about Sears Hometown Stores, visit www.searshometownstores.com.

About Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc.

Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc. (Nasdaq:SHOS) is a national retailer primarily focused on selling home appliances, lawn and garden equipment, tools and hardware. As of January 31, 2015, Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc. and its dealers and franchisees operated 1,260 stores across all 50 states as well as in Puerto Rico and Bermuda.

In addition to merchandise, Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc. provides consumers with access to a full suite of services, including home delivery, installation and extended service contracts.

Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc. operates through two segments--the Sears Hometown and Hardware segment and the Sears Outlet segment. The Sears Hometown and Hardware segment's stores are designed to provide customers with in-store and online access to a wide selection of national brands of home appliances, lawn and garden equipment, tools, sporting goods and household goods, depending on the particular store. The Sears Outlet stores are designed to provide customers with in-store and online access to purchase new, one-of-a-kind, out-of-carton, discontinued, reconditioned, overstocked and scratched and dented products across a broad assortment of merchandise categories, including home appliances, apparel, mattresses, sporting goods, tools and lawn and garden equipment at prices that are significantly lower than list prices.

SOURCE Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc.

Contact:

Jayne Levy
847-945-1300
jlevy@fishmanpr.com
www.shos.com

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