Amazon strikes deal with Sears, now selling Kenmore-brand appliances online

NEW YORK -- A major deal in the retail world was announced on Thursday as Sears will now be selling Kenmore brand appliances on Amazon.

The one-time retail giant, Sears Holding that owns both Sears and Kmart, has been closing stores and slashing costs to try and stay in business.

Less than a decade ago, Sears and Kmart had thousands of stores while Amazon had only a handful of warehouses. Those roles are reversing as Amazon dips into another market.

“It used to be that they were an online book sales company,” DU finance professor Mac Clouse said. “The competitive advantage they had over places like Walden Books and Barnes and Noble is they didn’t have the brick and mortar, they didn’t have to keep the inventory on hand and didn’t have all the costs associated with running a store. They were very successful, to the point where they drove out a lot of their competitors.”

The deal comes one month after Amazon acquired grocery giant Whole Foods for $13.4 billion.