J.C. Penney closing 154 stores, including one in southwest Ohio

J.C. Penney Company Inc. announced Thursday it will close 154 stores nationwide.

Calling it a “difficult decision,” the retail giant said it will continue to operate the majority of its stores and its online store, jcp.com.

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The location at Bridgewater Falls in Fairfield Twp. is not listed among the closures. Other Ohio stores, including one just south of Warren County in Hamilton County’s Sycamore Twp., were not as fortunate. Those stores include ones in:

Governor's Plaza in Sycamore Twp.

• Chapel Hill Mall in Akron

• Tri County Plaza in Akron

• Carnation Mall in Alliance

• Ashtabula Mall in Ashtabula

• Northtowne Mall in Defiance

• Summit Square Shopping Center in East Liverpool

• The Shoppes At Parma in Parma

• Miami Valley Mall in Piqua

On May 15, J.C. Penney announced it had entered into a restructuring support agreement with lenders holding approximately 70 percent of J.C. Penney’s first lien debt to reduce the company’s outstanding indebtedness and strengthen its financial position.

To implement the financial restructuring plan, the company filed voluntary petitions for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

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J.C. Penney said it identified the first phase of 154 store closures “following a comprehensive evaluation of its retail footprint and a careful analysis of store performance and future strategic fit” for the company.

Store closing sales will start June 12 at the 154 locations, the company said. J.C. Penney expects additional phases of store closing sales will start in the coming weeks.

Store closing sales for the first round of store closures are expected to take 10 to 16 weeks to complete.

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As of June 4, J.C. Penney has reopened nearly 500 stores since government officials have eased COVID-19 restrictions and Soltau said it looks forward to opening more.

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