FYI

J.C. Penney: Opening Early on Thanksgiving

jcpRetailers and shoppers can’t wait for Black Friday but last year J.C. Penney was late to the shopping party.

While people were lined up for door buster sales at Target, Walmart and Best Buy stores Penney stores didn’t open until 6 a.m. giving some of the competition a nine hour head start.

Southern Methodist University Marketing Professor Ed Fox said that’s a business no-no.

“You wouldn’t want people to have the opportunity to shop elsewhere to spend their money before they open your doors,” Professor Fox said. “That is why this is a pretty important competitive response to open the same time their competitors are opening.”

This year J.C. Penney is getting back in the game by opening doors at most of its more than eleven hundred stores at 8 p.m.

Retailers and shoppers can’t wait for Black Friday but last year J.C. Penney was late to the shopping party.

While people were lined up for door buster sales at Target, Walmart and Best Buy stores Penney stores didn’t open until 6 a.m. giving some of the competition a nine hour head start.

Southern Methodist University Marketing Professor Ed Fox said that’s a business no-no.

“You wouldn’t want people to have the opportunity to shop elsewhere to spend their money before they open your doors,” Professor Fox said. “That is why this is a pretty important competitive response to open the same time their competitors are opening.”

This year J.C. Penney is getting back in the game by opening doors at most of its more than eleven hundred stores at 8 p.m.

All of this after the company’s failed attempt to go upscale and banished coupons.

It didn’t work. Penney had a terrible 4th quarter and finished the fiscal year by losing nearly a billion dollars.

Now, its back-to-basics which includes the time honored tradition of door buster sales and coupons. On Friday Penney shares hit a 33 year low.

It’s crunch time.

“They’ve got to start showing results, the stock price has been sliding,” Professor Fox said. “It’s down 63% for the year and they need to start to show some positive revenue results soon in order to stop the slide.”

More hours also means more employees with Penney hiring an extra 35,000 workers for the holidays.

The National Retail Federation is expecting November and December sales of more than $600 billion and Penney wants a larger slice of the holiday pie.

Shoppers now have another place to go after they get their fill of turkey and Fox expects that to continue.

“I believe J.C. Penney is going to be operating stores for a long time to come and I can’t say that every retailer.”

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