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Even the mannequins are for sale. Photo: Rene Johnston/Toronto Star via Getty Images

Sears chairman and hedge fund billionaire Eddie Lampert today won an 11th-hour court ruling staying the chain's liquidation. If he can get a $120 million ante together by tomorrow, he can take part in an auction next Monday that could perhaps save the chain along with its more than 50,000 jobs, CNBC reports.

The backdrop: After 126 years and a long, painful run-up, it looked like the end of Sears as we knew it. Now, though, Lampert is trying again to entice the board with a bid to buy the company out of bankruptcy.

Why it matters: Lampert's interest is not altruistic. Rather, he has long expressed interest in valuable remaining pieces of the Sears carcass, including Kenmore brand appliances and the company's real estate. If he is successful, he would finally get his hands on those and more.

The big picture: Sears’ demise seems inevitable. And if it folds, it’ll be the official death of the retail titan of the last century — a company so powerful that it could have posed a formidable threat to Jeff Bezos.

  • "Sears was a great brand with a tremendous history of innovation. They innovated catalog retailing, built incredible private-label brands; they brought store credit cards to the mass market and built Sears into the largest retailer in the world," Herb Kleinberger, a professor of retail at NYU, tells Axios.
  • "They could have been the Amazon-killer retail brand if they had only realized the power of their platform and invested intelligently in a transformation, much like Walmart is doing today."

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Demonstrators on March 7 outside the Hennepin County Government Center, where the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, charged with murdering George Floyd, will begin in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Photo: Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

Thousands of protesters marched through Minneapolis Sunday, urging justice for George Floyd on the eve of the start of former police officer Derek Chauvin's trial over the 46-year-old's death.

The big picture: Chauvin faces charges for second-degree murder and manslaughter over Floyd's death last May, which ignited massive nationwide and global protests against racism and for police reform. His trial is due to start Monday, with jury selection procedures.

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Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. Photo: "Axios on HBO"

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Why it matters: Bourla told CNBC in December that company polling found that one of the most effective ways to increase confidence in the vaccine was to have the CEO take it.

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Between the lines: The SEC in December sued Ripple, and Garlinghouse personally, for allegedly selling over $1.3 billion in unregistered securities. Ripple's response is that its cryptocurrency, called XRP, didn't require registration because it's an asset rather than a security.