The optimism expressed in the post is commendable. However, there are no results that indicate prosperity is in the works. There is no indication that the customer is responding based upon results. There may be hope in the future provided that a ramped up promotional schedule will be implemented to draw traffic. Getting customers in the store is a major issue that must be overcome. In addition, how does anyone explain away the poor results for on line sales. Has anyone compared jcp's results to competition?
Your points are more than valid. There has been a significant drop off in head count in the stores. The online business also dropped considerably. There is simply so much to do that they can't get to everything at once. Add the 400 small stores to the question you have about the online business.
But I guess I see a different point on the elephant than you do. I see the immense job of first the transition and then the transformation. The grade for the transition would be a D-. They blew it with Ellen and their initial marketing flub about no more coupons which left the customers confused and angry. But what I liked was that they quickly saw that they had blown it and rather than try and patch and muddle, they slashed the program, fired the marketing guy and STOPPED MARKETING.
They saw they had a problem with marketing because the traditional marketing was coupons and sales which was no longer what was going to happen, and brand/image ads. How do you market brand/image when the brand/image you are creating does not yet truly appear in the stores? Hard to impossible...that is why I think they have come up with the haircuts and free family photo ideas....just get them in the stores for something but don't get them in on a false brand/image ad which the stores can't deliver YET.
One thing which had educated me a little in this business in listening to all the calls and presentations is the HUGE job they have taken on. It will take three years just to get the technology in place....Johnson knows technology and we can safely bet that withing those three years JC will be the most advanced department chain in technology. That is not just on the floor of the stores but in all aspects. That will save alot of money and floor space....
One last thing, I have spent too much time on this board and am sure most are tired of it, is that I had to look up the estimate for this quarter and was startled to see HOW GOOD THE NUMBERS are forecast to be. (Since I have been looking out to the future I wasn't concerned with the immediate quarters since I am going to own the stock for at least two more years) One would think by all the hand wringing that this was a disaster but the estimates for this quarter range from a loss of $,21 to a profit of $.11.
For the full year the estimate is from a negative $.30 to a positive $.85.
Those numbers shock me. This was the transition year; the year of all the bad stuff and the very, very negative and conservative estimates by the questioning analysts show the worst they expect for the year is a negative $.30?
I think everyone's mistake is in comparing results at all. This is NOT JCPenney, it's jcp. It's a brand new store. New look. New goals. New employees. New everything. The question remains, will the stockholders who thought they owned a piece of JCPenney, be content with holding shares of the new jcp. I think this whole new concept has every bit of a chance to succeed, but it will NEVER be the same store. The sooner everyone realizes that, the better.