JCPenney announced plans Friday morning to close about 130-140 stores nationwide in the next few months, in addition to a distribution center in Lakeland.
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In a statement posted on the company's website, chairman and CEO Marvin R. Ellison said the decision was made, in part, to "adjust our business to effectively compete against the growing threat of online retailers."
The closures represent about 13-14 percent of the company's lower-producing stores. The list of stores will be released in mid-March, according to the statement.
Officials said a distribution center in Lakeland will close in early June and operations transferred to Atlanta "as part of a strategic effort to streamline store support services."
The company also is of selling a supply chain facility in Buena Park, Calif.
"Maintaining a large store base gives us a competitive advantage in the evolving retail landscape since our physical stores are a destination for personalized beauty offerings, a broad array of special sizes, affordable private brands and quality home goods and services," Ellison said in the statement. "It is essential to retain those locations that present the best expression of the JCPenney brand and function as a seamless extension of the omnichannel experience through online order fulfillment, same-day pick up, exchanges and returns."
The moves are expected to save the company about $200 million this year, according to the statement.
The company reported net sales of $12.5 billion compared to $12.6 billion in 2015. Comparable store sales were flat for the year.
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