Sears and Amazon; Alexa, turn up my Kenmore air conditioner
- Author: Eleanor Harrison Jul 21, 2017,
Jul 21, 2017, 0:34
Sears (SHLD) bit the bullet on July 20th and acquiesced, announcing that it will sell its Kenmore appliances on Amazon, including a new line of Kenmore Smart appliances featuring Amazon's Alexa. "Voice is a natural interface for the smart home", Charlie Kindel, Director of Alexa Smart Home said of the integration, "so we're thrilled that customers can now simply ask Alexa to interact with their Kenmore Smart appliances".
"The launch of Kenmore products on Amazon.com will significantly expand the distribution and availability of the Kenmore brand in the USA", said Sears CEO Edward Lampert in a press release.
Sears will begin selling Kenmore appliances on Amazon.com, including smart appliances that can be synced with Amazon's voice assistant, Alexa. The Kenmore Smart air conditioner are available up to a capacity of 18,000 BTU. However, even if you buy an appliance through Amazon rather than at a Sears location, the company will still offer its own delivery and installation services. Those appliances already connect with users' smartphones.
Along with most traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, Sears has struggled this year.
"We continuously look for opportunities to enhance the reach of our iconic brands to more customers and create additional value from our assets", said Edward S. Lampert, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Sears Holdings.
Shares of Sears Holdings jumped more than $1.69, or 19.3 percent, to $10.36 in early trade.
Park declined to disclose the financial terms of the deal, but Petriello said third-parties that sell on Amazon typically pay a commission of about 15 percent.
The deal with Amazon also would not limit Sears' ability to keep leveraging the Kenmore brand with licensing deals, but Park said Sears is focused on making the Amazon partnership successful.
Earlier in July, Sears landed yet another credit line - valued at $200 million - from CEO Eddie Lampert's hedge fund, ESL Partners.