"The real estate occupied by the company is worth more than the stock
value. Thus it makes sense to sell of pieces to recover the value of
the real estate"
This is typical of the cursory insight provided by the likes of Forbes.
The analysis assumes a static equity valuation, clearly a weak
assumption, particularly given that the catalyst for the article is
probably the merger. If we assume the first sentence is true, the
question should be "why?". It must be that the real estate is more
valuable in some other use, than it is to Sears, as currently
configured. The new strategy, the merger, etc. were undertaken,
presumably, to add value to the company. At some stock valuation, the
stores will exceed that value of the real estate in some other use. I
have no opinion on whether the strategy will pay off in the long run,
but is is silly to assume that liquidation is the optimal path, as
Forbes has apparently concluded.