Author Topic: Is Sears a endangered brand?  (Read 4536 times)

Offline AJ

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Offline rbmappltech

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2014, 09:49:56 PM »
They are working on it one day at a time. One lost customer at a time.

Offline andersenappliance

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2014, 11:30:38 AM »
yeah, I guess getting yourself saddled with a blood-sucking slavemaster hedgefund as an owner is not a win-win strategy.

Sears could have been Amazon, if they had just put their catalog on line.  But then again, Amazon isn't doing so good either...

Offline RAH52

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2014, 03:18:23 PM »
I read on CNN amazon has only made a small profit in 2 years out of 20

Offline go400

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2014, 10:52:44 AM »
Years ago when Frigidaire had a run on failed compressors/sealed systems, they contracted with Sears to market their defective product. Sears didn't seem to care they
 where pushing a defective product.

Offline Maytag Man 6725

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2014, 07:39:04 PM »
Well, now that LG is making most of their junk, things can't be good. Back in 1990 when I started servicing Maytag was awesome, then they played the trash the quality and sell off their old reputation. Look how well that served them. Sears had better wake up. Really don't understand W.P. Trashing their quality lately. S . Q. Is the only real washer left. As a seasoned tech I hate when my customers ask what to buy. It's all junk, but that's what is called job security:)

Offline Maintech

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2014, 08:50:14 PM »
Amazon could be hauling in large profits for the last many years, but they reinvest almost every penny into growth.

As for Sears I believe they will be here for years to come but I think they will go back to their roots more or less. In the years to come you will see them move to a mostly online store with most if not all of their mall stores closing or downsizing, I do think you will see more small non-mall stores open with attached pickup centers for online orders. In essence they will move back to the catalog days with a modern twist. It is hard to believe but the biggest profit center for Sears inc is not the retail but the repair business through A&E/Sears repair and eventually I believe you will not see any more Sears repair trucks or techs. In many areas they have already phased out the Sears trucks/Techs altogether already. I would not be surprised if at some point the A&E service is spun off into a independent business with Sears as a client. IF you go upto headquarters you will see that their is already a lot of separation going on , I think the only reason this has not happened yet it due to the Protection agreement and now the new home Warranty business.

Offline Maytag Man 6725

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2014, 08:57:42 PM »
Wonder why Whirlpool and Sears severed ties?

Offline andersenappliance

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2014, 11:32:37 PM »
No Offense, Maintech, but you are right.

I do not believe that the repair business is their main profit center.

If it was, they would not be focusing on hiring salespeople rather than fixit guys for their repair business.  Nor would they be subbing out to some of these other groups for their repairs.

Simply put, Sears is being bled dry.

And on another note; Amazon is burning capital, NOT investing for market share.

There is a major difference there.

It'd be interesting to take a Sears on the mechanical side and experiment with it.  Could you sell appliances, lawnmowers, exercise equipment, and tools via showroom and internet, and have small strip-mall size repair shops for the maintenance.  Dump the dishes, clothes, and linens. I bet someone tries it.

Offline LowSL2

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2014, 11:02:48 AM »
The problem is that they charge $75 to give an estimate on a fridge ($79.95 on everything else) and it costs them $110 to $130 to send a tech... so for every declined estimate they loose around $50.

And every time someone is not home, they lose money for that trip.

They just started a $4 fuel surcharge on collect calls... we'll see how that goes.

I could go on.. the main problem is they feel the need to hire salespeople instead of people that can fix things. How do you expect to get a quality tech when you pay them $17 an hour?
LowSL2
15 Years of Professional Appliance Repair Experience

Offline LowSL2

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2014, 05:06:11 PM »
The problem is that they charge $75 to give an estimate on a fridge ($79.95 on everything else) and it costs them $110 to $130 to send a tech... so for every declined estimate they loose around $50.

And every time someone is not home, they lose money for that trip.

They just started a $4 fuel surcharge on collect calls... we'll see how that goes.

I could go on.. the main problem is they feel the need to hire salespeople instead of people that can fix things. How do you expect to get a quality tech when you pay them $17 an hour?
LowSL2
15 Years of Professional Appliance Repair Experience

Offline Maintech

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2014, 06:19:45 PM »
No Offense, Maintech, but you are right.

I do not believe that the repair business is their main profit center.


I based my profit statements on the presentation they did last year at Tech School in Chicago, they had several of the numbers guys come in and give us a rundown on various aspects of the overall business and based on their charts and statements the repair/PA business was supporting other aspects of the company and if I remember correctly PA profits then repair parts profits were #1 and #2

Offline rbmappltech

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2014, 09:09:53 PM »
Sears A&E Factory Service has a few problems for sure.
I think they are having trouble finding good techs for one. No pay raises for the last 4 years in our region, that does not inspire good techs to sign up for the Sears program. Lack of consistent training, I have not seen any kind of manufactures training for the last 4 years. Let alone any updated manufactures product DVD'S  for the last 2 years. We were supposed to have manufactures  training  last summer, but the District Manager canceled training. Stating that there were not enough first time completes to have training. There is a lot of  pressure to sell Protection Agreements to the customer's we service. Every year Sears is losing good techs that retired or go elsewhere. I don't see allot of young faces in our group. There are allot of issues that A&E Factory Service/Sears has when it come to hiring and keeping techs. I think if A&E can break off from  Sears and be their own company they would do a lot better.

Offline Maytag Man 6725

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2014, 09:23:15 PM »
Our industry in General is suffering from these problems. Many good techs are either retiring or dying with no one replacing them. The manufactures put very little $ into training any more. Used to be years ago that your field service rep for the manufacture was a seasoned tech taken from the field and paid well enough to keep him as a rep. He was someone that new his stuff. Now these companies are too cheap to hire real techs as reps. As a result we are on our own. Left to self train. I don't care how long any of us have been doing this (myself for over 24 years) none of us know it all. This Forum can be a great tool and asset for us. In our area 5-6 of us reputable service companies actually help each other. Technically we are in compitition , but we help each other. We provide parts off our trucks if close by and share info. It all pays off, makes us more money and makes us better techs!

Offline andersenappliance

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Re: Is Sears a endangered brand?
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2014, 10:50:07 AM »
I think what our industry is suffering from is simple economic squeeze.

If they sell the unit for $400-$500, and the average part cost is $80, then there is simply no room to hire a tech.  Even minimum wage costs about $8/hr, and you need to pay your employee for travel time.  If a tech gets $17/hr, you can just about double that for his cost to you, more if you offer benefits.  That means the tech costs the business $272 a day, then add the truck, tools, computer, and inventory that has to go with him every where he goes.  If you have a tech, you also need a shop, so that increases overhead.

People won't pay much more that half of new to repair.  So it is really hard to have a business that has room for a well paid tech, and an owner.  Appliances are simply too inexpensive to buy new, and parts are too expensive to repair.  The potential repair business is squeezed between the low cost of replacement and high cost of parts & other expenses.

If a tech really knows his stuff: Refrigerant, heating, cooling, electrical, electronics, gas, water, motors, etc., he can get a good paying job just about anywhere that will out do anything he can get in the appliance business (even as an owner, when all is said and done).

At this point, it is not just Sears that is endangered.  It is appliance repair.

The only thing that'll change that is higher appliance prices.

 

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