Kohl's Is the Department Store of Choice for Hedge-Fund Managers

(Bloomberg) -- Eddie Lampert is famous for being an influential hedge-fund manager and the chief executive officer of Sears Holdings Corp., a company where he’s also the top investor.

But his fellow hedge-fund honchos are backing a different department store: Kohl’s Corp.

Kohl’s, a chain with about 1,200 stores, accounted for the biggest chunk of the firms’ investment dollars last quarter. The net investment amounted to nearly $224 million, with Kohl’s shares climbing about 20 percent in the period. Among the pack, Citadel was the biggest investor in the retailer.

Kohl’s was followed by J.C. Penney Co., Nordstrom Inc., Sears and Macy’s Inc. -- all of which declined in the period.

Every department-store chain is going through a painful retrenchment right now, with more consumers skipping the mall and shopping online instead. But Kohl’s is faring better than many.

It also has teamed up with Amazon.com Inc. in a partnership that could help mitigate a brick-and-mortar decline. Kohl’s is selling the e-commerce giant’s products in some of its stores and accepting returns from Amazon customers.

Kohl’s slogan is “expect great things” and -- for now, at least -- hedge-fund managers seem to be taking that to heart.

©2017 Bloomberg L.P.

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