U.S. retailer Sears Holdings Corp which has been struggling to generate cash from its operations, sees room to close more stores next year says Chief Executive Edward Lampert.

According to Reuters, the operator of Sears department stores and the Kmart discount chain has closed about 300 U.S. stores since 2010, tightly managing inventory, selling real estate and shedding assets at home and in Canada.   

“We need to make the difficult choice” in some cases when the stores are unprofitable and as more shopping moves online, says Lampert.

The comments by the billionaire hedge fund manager, who is also Sears' chairman and largest shareholder, helped to reduce the stock's decline to 2.2 percent on Thursday. It has risen 49 percent year to date.

Sears reported a wider quarterly net loss on tepid sales at both chains and margin weakness due to more promotions targeting rewards members. Still, Lampert said focusing on that segment was essential to Sears' success.

“You may sell more or less products, but you know if John Smith and Mary Smith are visiting with us more, if they are buying more, if they are buying in more categories, if they are earning points and using those points,” days Lampert,  “That's something to really build on.”

Sears has almost 2,500 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States and Canada, according to its website.

The company is trying to engineer a turnaround. Sales have been falling since 2005, when Lampert merged Sears Roebuck & Co and Kmart in an $11 billion deal.

“I would have seen the tide turning by now,” says Lampert.  “It hasn't turned yet. My expectation is that we have a resourceful group of people, and we are going to figure this out.”