Skip to comments.Activist investor William Ackman resigns from J.C. Penney's board
Posted on 08/13/2013 5:03:47 AM PDT by xzins
William Ackman has resigned from J.C. Penney Co.'s board as part of a deal to resolve an unusually public battle between the activist investor and the struggling department store operator.
J.C. Penney's rose in premarket trading Tuesday.
The announcement follows statements Ackman made last week saying he'd lost confidence in Penney's board and that its Chairman Thomas Engibous should be replaced. Ackman and the retailer's board also were bickering over how quickly the company should replace CEO Mike Ullman.
Ackman's investment firm, Pershing Square Capital Management, has a nearly 18 percent stake in Penney.
Penney's board also made it clear that it continues to support Ullman, who was brought back as CEO in April. Ullman had previously served as Penney CEO from 2004 to 2011.
The dispute has been a distraction for a retailer trying to dig its way out of trouble.
Ullman had replaced Ron Johnson, who was ousted as CEO after 17 months because his radical makeover led to massive losses and sales declines.
Ullman has been working to stabilize the business by bringing back basic merchandise and more frequent sales eliminated by Johnson in a bid to attract younger, hipper customers.
(Excerpt) Read more at nypost.com ...
Personally, I think Penny & Sears both need to get out of malls and go Wal-Mart. The roots of both companies are discount retail, both known in time past as blue-collar stores. Sears is positioned for that if they'd simply reflag their K-Marts as Sears stores. Sears has always been known as better quality than K-Mart.
“Personally, I think Penny & Sears both need to get out of malls and go Wal-Mart. The roots of both companies are discount retail, both known in time past as blue-collar stores. Sears is positioned for that if they’d simply reflag their K-Marts as Sears stores. Sears has always been known as better quality than K-Mart.”
That’s some of the best business advice I could imagine given the situation. Too bad you’re not on the board. Attempting to go Starbucks to attract the young an hip was beyond stupid. I’ve heard of rebranding, but you can’t rebrand a pig as a cow. You need to find better markets for the pig, not lust after steak you can’t produce.
Absolutely correct. At a time when Wal-Mart, Family Dollar, and the like are succeeding, is no time for a major retailer to turn itself into a boutique. In 2001, Family Dollar joined the S&P 500 stock market index. In 2002, the company joined the Fortune 500 list of largest publicly held companies. Sears could reflag the K-Marts as Sears stores and could use the K-Mart name to compete in small towns with the Family Dollars.
I’ve dug things out of dumpsters that were better quality than K-Mart.
J.C. Penney? I’ve erased that name from my consumer index.
K-Mart is the pits. It is easily the dirtiest store in our town and the employees look like they are short a few brain cells.
These blood-sucking activists should be shown the door. In fact, they shouldn’t be allowed in the door. The founders of U.S. companies should never take their businesses public. It often leads to misery by the parasites that feed off the ideas and effort of others.
I’ve noticed a considerable improvement at JCP in the last few months. Salespeople seem happier, too.
Last time I was in Penneys was over a year ago. We had to walk through it to get to the places we wanted to go in the mall.
I checked out some nice cooking knives, and bought them the next day at Walmart for considerably less money.
The other ‘anchor tenant’, Sears, is its mirror image.
K-Mart is a synonym for cheap in the mind of many, many people.
That is why, owning all those big retail boxes, Sears would do well to occupy them, change the name to Sears, and put Sears merchandise throughout.
I’ll probably hate myself for asking; but how should a business owner raise capital?
That is good advice. I agree that Sears has a much better brand name than K Mart.
I cringe at even going to K-Mart. I do not even look at their ads anymore.
Target, Walmart, and Kohls are the stores I frequent now.
The right idea, but probably too late.
Walmart has spent billions on automation and strategic planning to shave every last penny off their cost of goods - there is no real way for any competitor to match them strictly on price. Competitors have to bring the same approach by putting smaller stores in "underserved" markets where people might not notice that the prices are a dollar or two higher than Walmart. Sears and JCP are big box stores that tend to be located in Walmart neighborhoods, already - places where they also have Kohl's and Target to deal with.
It's understandable that JCP tried to go up instead of down, but the middle class is shrinking so fast there isn't much "up" left to chase. Ron Johnson's plan might have worked in 2004 - but he failed to understand that the actions and attitudes of Obama and his 60's radical cohorts have slammed the door on upwardly mobile people.
My favorite brand of polo shirts was carried by Penny. I quit going there because of the kow-towing to gays.
I’ve been to K-Mart a few times in the past couple years. Bought a Kenmore air conditioner there after Sears bought K-Mart. That’s why it puzzles me that Sears doesn’t just reflag those buildings.
The reason I think it’s not too late for Sears is that they already own K-Mart and their brand is viewed as more quality than Wal-Mart.
Honest to goodness, I was looking for shirts in Wal-Mart the other day, and every shirt on the rack was made in an Arabic country...Pakistan, Jordan,etc. I’m not lying.
There is NO WAY I’m sending those folks one dime of my money. Period.
Sears could out-quality Wal-Mart and they’re positioned to do it.
K-Mart needs to shut down completely. Family Dollar and Dollar General are making great strides in small towns but they’re shooting themselves in the foot for going up against each other in the same towns. They are also expanding too quickly. Every small town around here with a population of 3-5K has both. It’s too much of the same thing. If there was a large enough market for K-Mart in a small town, Walmart would be more the more welcomed company by the public.
I agree Sears would do well as a stand alone store as they were decades ago.
Those small town chain stores are exploding, so healthy competition is a good thing. If K-Mart rebranded in the Family Dollar mold as a smaller dollar store, and if Sears took over their big box stores with the Sears name, quality, and history as the replacement, then Sears would get value out of both.
K-Mart is easy seen as having similar quality as Family Dollar. Small K-Marts scattered throughout the towns of America would have a huge legacy of marketing to build upon.
Not a bad idea, but if I were Sears, I would distance myself from that worthless K-Mart brand, or sunset it altogether.
The other danger is in huge brick-and-mortar stores when the consumer model is moving more and more to the virtual marketplace. Remember, Sears started as a catalog operation. Maybe it’s time it found its roots again.
Close down all but the most profitable buildings, sell the real estate, and use that capital to challenge Amazon in the e-market.
I like the idea.
There are some things, though, especially perishables, that aren't amenable to e-commerce.
The only thing I buy at JCP are men’s shirts and slacks. Very good quality at excellent prices when you get them on sale.
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