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JCPenney To Close Six Stores

A JCPenney department store.
A JCPenney department store.

(Filed Under Fashion News). J.C. Penney Company Inc. plans to close six underperforming stores, wind down catalog and outlet operations, and streamline its call center and custom decorating businesses, the company announced Monday.

JCPenney has decided to take these actions, which it will implement throughout this year, after its board of directors and executive board reviewed opportunities for sales growth in line with the company’s long-range plan.

“We are focused on increasing profitability and accelerating our growth,” said Myron (Mike) Ullman III, chairman and C.E.O. “To achieve this, we undertook a thorough evaluation of our operations to ensure we are managing costs and allocating our resources to strategies that will best drive both our top and bottom line, with the objective of delivering enhanced returns to shareholders […] We see significant opportunities ahead in our core department store and online businesses as part of our long range plan and we are well prepared to capitalize on them in 2011 and the years to come.”

The company will close stores in Morrow and Duluth, Ga.; West Dundee, Ill.; Des Moines, Iowa; High Point, N.C.; and Culpeper, Va. as these locations no longer meet its profitability threshold.

JCPenney will wind down its legacy catalog business, including exiting its 19 catalog outlet stores, throughout 2011 and 2012. The company also plans to close its call center facilities in Grand Rapids, Mich. and Albuquerque, N.M. and consolidate all activity supporting its department stores and online customers to its three remaining facilities in Columbus, Pittsburgh and Milwaukee.

The company expects these actions to result in a positive impact on earnings of about $25 to $30 million, or 7 cents per share, during 2012.

JCPenney operates about 1,100 department stores throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.

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Published 01-24-2011 by Amanda Torres Price

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