JCPenney announced Friday it will be closing up to 140 stores along with two distribution centers over the next several months while instituting an early retirement program in an effort to increase profits in the era of online shopping.
The 130-140 scheduled closures represent about 13 percent to 14 percent of the company's current store count.
JCPenney said it plans to release a full list of planned closures in mid-March pending notification of all affected personnel. Nearly all impacted stores are expected to close in the second quarter of 2017, it said.
"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," JCPenney said in a statement.
The early retirement program will be available to approximately 6,000 eligible employees, the company said.
"We believe closing stores will also allow us to adjust our business to effectively compete against the growing threat of online retailers," JCPenney said in its statement. "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."
JCPenney has area stores at the Palisades Center Mall in West Nyack, Poughkeepsie Galleria and Danbury Fair Mall.
The distribution centers slated for closures are in Lakeland, Florida, and Buena Park, California.