Tags: JCPenney | Jobs | Texas | Pittsburgh

JCPenney to Cut 900 Jobs in Texas and Pittsburgh

Thursday, 05 April 2012 01:43 PM

J.C. Penney said on Thursday that it will cut about 900 jobs, including roughly 600 at its headquarters, as it trims costs and tries to start running its 110-year-old business more like a nimble start-up.

The Plano, Texas-based retailer, which has already overhauled its pricing strategy under new chief executive Ron Johnson, said it plans to close a customer call center in Pittsburgh, affecting about 300 employees.

As of late January, Penney had about 159,000 employees, including part-time workers.

"We are going to operate like a start-up," said Johnson, a former Apple Inc and Target Corp executive. "Often in business, companies must streamline in order to leap forward."

Penney is shutting the call center as the number of calls the company is getting from shoppers has fallen more than 30 percent since the new pricing plan was implemented on Feb. 1, it said.

The Pittsburgh call center will shut down on July 1, while centers in Columbus, Ohio, and Milwaukee will remain open.

Thursday's announcement is part of a plan unveiled in January, when Penney said it aimed to cut annual expenses by $900 million by the end of 2013.

At that time, Chief Operating Officer Mike Kramer said Penney's reporting structure was bloated and suggested the company could save $90 million a year with a leaner operation at its headquarters.

Penney shares were down 1.8 percent at $34.82 in early afternoon on the New York Stock Exchange.

© 2018 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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Thursday, 05 April 2012 01:43 PM
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