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Great Bend's J.C. Penney store to close

POSTED March 17, 2017 10:34 a.m.

The J.C. Penney store at 1500 Kansas Ave. in Great Bend is on the list of 138 stores that J.C. Penney Company Inc. will close in the coming months.
The list of stores was announced Friday morning. Three other Kansas stores are on the list: one in the Hutchinson Mall, a freestanding store in Lawrence, a store on the Chanute Square and one in the Winfield Plaza.

On Feb. 24, the company based in Plano, Texas, first announced plans to close two distribution facilities and approximately 130-140 stores over the next few months. A news release stated J.C. Penney “is implementing a plan to optimize its national retail operations as part of the company’s successful return to profitability."

“These strategic decisions will help align the Company’s brick-and-mortar presence with its omnichannel network, thereby redirecting capital resources to invest in locations and initiatives that offer the greatest revenue potential.”
Marvin R. Ellison, chairman and chief executive officer of J.C. Penney, stated:
“In 2016, we achieved our $1 billion EBITDA target and delivered a net profit for the first time since 2010; however, we believe we must take aggressive action to better align our retail operations for sustainable growth. During the year, it became evident the stores that could fully execute the Company’s growth initiatives of beauty, home refresh and special sizes generated significantly higher sales, and a more vibrant in-store shopping environment. We believe the relevance of our brick and mortar portfolio will be driven by the implementation of these initiatives consistently to a larger percent of our stores. Therefore, our decision to close stores will allow us to raise the overall brand standard of the Company and allocate capital more efficiently.
“We understand that closing stores will impact the lives of many hard working associates, which is why we have decided to initiate a voluntary early retirement program for approximately 6,000 eligible associates. By coordinating the timing of these two events, we can expect to see a net increase in hiring as the number of full-time associates expected to take advantage of the early retirement incentive will far exceed the number of full-time positions affected by the store closures,” added Ellison.
Associates who will be impacted by the store and distribution center closures will receive separation benefits, which includes assistance identifying other employment opportunities and outplacement services such as resume writing and interview preparation.


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KSJW: March 20, 2017 8:22 a.m.

Sadly, it's not JC Penney or other business storefronts in local areas who are the bad guys here. It is the local Billy Bob's down the road who are learning to use the internet and bypass local businesses and families to save 50 cents on their purchase of this or that. The real cost down the road will be no retailers, no local repair shops. Folks buy on ebay from some Hai Fong sweat shop or some site where they have a domain name that sounds good, an 800 number and a guy sitting in his living room recliner watching soap operas eating Cheetos and taking orders. They have no overhead, no local building to pay for, no real personnel to employ, no service equipment to buy, maintain and fuel for making on site service calls, should the need arise. No benefits to pay for, and no local return of the flow of monies that make a community. So, folks, if reality doesn't kick in to you so well, just put on your little Hebrew cap and keep buying off the internet for cheap and see where we all end up. Soon there be no one to call locally to get anything fixed. And that also goes for doing routine business out of town where you could have done it here.

pop2bad: March 17, 2017 2:00 p.m.

its not fair to try to get the experienced people to take early retirement just to hire people to replace them at min. wage. money hungry bastards look at $10-$12 hr. versus $7.50-$8.00 hr., After a BILLION dollar profit. encourages readers to interact with one another. We will not edit your comments, but we reserve the right to delete any inappropriate responses. To report offensive or inappropriate comments, contact our editor.

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