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KMART TO BE FIRST U.S. GENERAL MERCHANDISE RETAILER IN CZECHOSLOVAKIA

KMART TO BE FIRST U.S. GENERAL MERCHANDISE RETAILER IN CZECHOSLOVAKIA
 TROY, Mich., May 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Kmart Corp. (NYSE: KM) today announced it has purchased from the State Asset Fund of the Czech Republic a majority interest in Maj (pronounced "my") -- one of the largest department stores located in the heart of Prague. The announcement was made jointly by Joseph E. Antonini, Kmart chairman, president and CEO, and Tomas Jezek, the Czech minister of privatization. The purchase of Maj represents Kmart's initial retail entry into the European market.
 "This global expansion is very timely for Kmart as our domestic $3 billion Kmart store renewal program is on schedule and yielding results that are exceeding our expectations," Antonini said.
 "In reviewing the global market, Kmart joins a long list of American companies which have invested over $1.4 billion in Czechoslovakia in the last year. Among those are Procter & Gamble, Ford, Dow Chemical, American Standard, Coca-Cola, TRW, Searle and Rockwell International," Antonini added.
 Joseph R. Thomas, Kmart's executive vice president of International, said, "Czechoslovakia offers Kmart an opportunity to contribute our retailing expertise in Central Europe as new and important buying patters are being established. We are committed to developing products in Czechoslovakia for export to the U.S., and we are eager to bring our products to the Czechoslovak people."
 Jezek said: "We are very pleased that Kmart will bring significant new benefits to the Czechoslovak people. Kmart's customer service strategy is very appealing to us as we strive to improve the daily lives of our citizens. In addition, Kmart's long- term commitment will help stimulate local economic activity and new markets for Czechoslovak products."
 As well as modernizing and refurbishing this facility and streamlining operations, Kmart will make available to Maj its extensive discount retailing expertise. Kmart will share its technology and state-of-the-art distribution methods as well as its considerable merchandising skills and expertise in human resources, finance and corporate development. Experienced Kmart management, in partnership with Maj management, will also modify operations to fulfill local Prague needs.
 In addition, government authorities in the Czech and Slovak Republics announced they have also approved Kmart Corp.'s purchase of 11 other department stores. However, negotiations are continuing, and the contracts for these additional stores are subject to final review and approval. Based on attaining all the necessary approvals, Kmart's financial commitment, including capital investments over a three-year period, will approximate $100 million USD.
 Kmart's other international operations include Kmart Canada Limited, which operates 125 stores in Canada; a 22 percent equity in Coles Myer Ltd., the largest retailer in Australia; and 14 retail outlets in Puerto Rico. Kmart also has buying offices in West Germany, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Singapore, Japan, China and the Philippines.
 In addition to its international operations, Kmart Corp. employs 350,000 and serves the United States and Canada with over 2,300 Kmart stores and 1,900 specialty retail outlets including those of Pay Less Drug Stores, Builders Square, Waldenbooks, PACE Membership Warehouse, The Sports Authority and OfficeMax.
 -0- 5/7/92
 /CONTACT: Mary McGeachy, director, national media relations, 212-687-8747, or Mary L. Lorencz, manager, public communications, 313-643-1021, both of Kmart/
 (KM) CO: Kmart Corporation ST: Michigan IN: REA SU:


MH-DC -- DC011 -- 7631 05/07/92 12:31 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 7, 1992
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