Sears offers Vets their own store

Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears is offering military veterans a chance to own their own Sears Hometown Store through their Operation Stores and Stripes contest.

The contest, which is sponsored in part by Maytag Appliances, will supply the winner with their very own Sears Hometown Store location and license, merchandise, renovation, the first 90-days of the lease as well as 90 days of operating cash flow up to $130,000.

But Sears isn’t handing over keys to a brand new store to just anyone who’s ever worn a uniform, the contest includes a strict vetting process to asses applicants retail experience as well as their financial stability. To even apply, applicants must meet certain requirements aside from being military veterans such as have a minimum of $100,000 net worth, $10,000 of which must be liquid.

The company also laid out what qualities they’re looking for in their potential winner on their website. The contestants will be rated on five key elements according to the contest rules: applicants ability to be capable of running a successful store/business taking into account past retail experience and financial literacy (35%), customer focused individual (10%), overall character (10%), appropriately representing the Sears brand (10%), financially sound (35%)

"We are thrilled with the response from our hometown heroes to the contest thus far," said Will Powell, senior vice president, Sears Holdings and president, Hometown Stores. "We hope that in these final days of the contest even more of our nation's service men and women submit their application at We look forward to adding another deserving military veteran to the Sears Hometown Stores family."

Qualifying military veterans have until June 25 to log onto to apply.  Contest winners will be posted on the website September 30. The contest has been running since May.

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