Penney Targets Middle America and Target
By George Anderson
In an informal meeting with Wall Street investors in New York yesterday, new J.C. Penney chief executive Mike Ullman indicated the chain needs to continue sharpening its pencil on pricing and offering fashion choices that compel Middle America to shop in its stores.
One retailer Mr. Ullman evidently feels has distinguished itself in achieving the types of results he seeks is Target. According to The Dallas Morning News, Penney’s chief mentioned Target more than any other retail competitor during the meeting. “Everyone is a competitor and Penney can’t just look at a Kohl’s or Mervyn’s and say ‘that’s my competition,’ ” he said.
Mr. Ullman who took over as Penney’s chief in December from Allen Questrom said he also thinks the Kmart/Sears merger may offer growth opportunities for his business. He believes that once the deal is finalized, Sears will begin to close a number of its stores. In turn, Mr. Ullman believes former shoppers at these stores will be inclined to check Penney out.
Moderator’s Comment: What is your reaction to the views expressed by Mike Ullman as reported in The Dallas Morning News article? –
George Anderson – Moderator