Alan Hassenflu’s Fidelis didn’t need a catalog to buy another former Sears store.
The Houston, Texas-based commercial real estate firm scooped up the 180,000-square-foot property at 7503 West Cermak Road in suburban North Riverside earlier this year, according to Cook County public records.
That marked its second purchase of a defunct Chicagoland Sears from New York-based Seritage Growth Properties, the real estate investment trust formed in 2015 to sell off the retailer’s property portfolio so it can pay off a massive loan to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. Fidelis recently bought a 130,000-square-foot building in the western suburb of Lombard for $12.6 million.
Seritage has sold several vacant Sears stores in the Chicago area in recent months, including a $4 million sale to an auto dealer of an empty 190,000-square-foot department store and 24,000-square-foot auto center building in Joliet. In Orland Park, the REIT sold the vacant 200,000-square-foot former Sears store at the Orland Square Mall for $4.3 million.
The Cook County store closed in September 2020, after anchoring the North Riverside Park Mall for two decades, according to local news reports. The space is now occupied by New Jersey-based discount retailer Forman Mills, which signed a lease for the space in January 2022, along with a Round 1 bowling alley and an Amita Health office.
The two former Sears properties appear to be Fidelis’ first purchases in Illinois, according to the company’s website. The firm’s portfolio includes more than 60 properties in Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana, Tennessee, South Dakota and Colorado.