Business Monday

Sears and South Florida keep a close relationship

Sears Holdings Corp. chairman Edward Lampert, at a news conference in New York on Nov. 17, 2004, lives in the Miami Beach area.
Sears Holdings Corp. chairman Edward Lampert, at a news conference in New York on Nov. 17, 2004, lives in the Miami Beach area. AP

Although Sears Holdings corporate headquarters has long been near Chicago, its financial hub is Miami, home to three -- and until recently, four -- of the company’s board of directors, more than any other single city.

Investor Edward Lampert, who lives in Miami Beach, bought the company in 2004. In 2013 he took over operations as CEO in addition to his role as chairman. He remains the majority shareholder, controlling almost 57 percent of the common stock individually and through other entities, according to public filings.

Miami-based Fairholme Capital Management, run by investor Bruce Berkowitz, holds another 27 percent of the common stock, according to public filings.

Kunal Kamlani, president of ESL Investments, founded by Lampert, serves on the board of directors. Previously Kamlani was president of Prestige Cruise Holdings Cruise Holdings, where he was responsible for both the Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands. Those brands were acquired by Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings in 2014.

Cesar Alvarez, co-chairman of the Greenberg Traurig law firm and a longtime Miami civic leader, served on the board until recently.

JANE WOOLDRIDGE

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