J.C. Penney has a new look, a new pricing strategy, a new CEO and a new philosophy - and they're not particularly modest about their expectations.
"J. C. Penney Company, Inc. is taking the first steps on its path to reclaiming its birthright and becoming America’s favorite store," read the opening sentence of a press release Monday about the initiative. The changes debut on Wednesday.
The company, coming off a string of lackluster sales results, is revamping its approach under the leadership of Ron Johnson. He's the man who brought Apple stores into being, along with former CEO Steve Jobs.
|The new JCP logo|
"Three ways to price our merchandise, and no more," J.C. Penney said, in its press release.
Johnson is also attempting to de-clutter the stores and make them cleaner-looking. There will be no more tables in aisles, and 70 percent fewer signs. Anything will be accepted for return at any store, J.C. Penney said, and stores will change monthly "to make it fun and fulfilling to shop."
Some analysts have hailed the move, while others say it poses a risk to J.C. Penney: If customers accustomed to sharp two-day sales with eye-popping 70 percent off headlines, will they respond to Red, White, and Blue?
There are more than 1,100 J.C. Penney stores nationwide. In the Charlotte region, there are five stores, at Carolina Place mall in Pineville, Eastridge Mall in Gastonia, Carolina Mall in Concord, the Rock Hill Galleria and Monroe Crossing.
So, what do you think? Will bringing in an ex-Apple guru, cleaning up the stores and simplifying the prices lure you to J.C. Penney?