JCPenney to Shutter Massive Wisconsin Distribution Center, Slash 670 Jobs

J.C. Penney Corp. is shutting the doors to its 2 million-square-foot distribution center in Wauwatosa, Wis.

The retailer’s decision to close the plant this summer will cut about 670 jobs, according to company spokesperson Carter English, who confirmed the news with FN. The move is part of JCPenney’s effort to reduce its supply chain network, which is “oversized relative to its national store footprint,” and involves the shutdown of eight more stores — one of which will be its 183,000-square-foot Westfield Garden State Plaza anchor location in Paramus, N.J., after 60 years as a mainstay at the center.

“It’s never easy taking actions that directly impact our valued associates; however, we feel this is a necessary business decision,” English added.

The company will relocate the distribution center’s operations to facilities in Lenexa, Kan., and Columbus, Ohio, after the warehouse closes on July 1 and the customer care department shutters on Sept. 1. Eligible employees will be able to collect separation benefits, including outplacement services and on-site career training courses, the company said.

Last year, the Dallas-based department store chain shut down 139 stores, leaving it with 874. The closing of its distribution center is the latest in a series of shutterings from major retailers like Macy’s and Sears, with both shifting away from large-format stores and prioritizing digital-first strategies.

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