JCPenney CEO Ron Johnson spoke with CNBC today to talk about his first year at the helm of the struggling department store chain and he addressed the recent controversy involving bondholders.
Lawyers who say they represent half of the holders of a tranche of JCPenney bonds due in 2037 sent the company a letter earlier this week alleging that it breached a bond agreement.
He fired one back at the bondholders making the allegations.
"In the old days people hold stocks and make money on how the company performs," he said. "Today, a lot of people try to make money in very short, kind of artificial ways."
He simply denied the claims that JCPenney violated a covenant.
"We think this is totally groundless," said Johnson. "There's a lot of opinions that support that."
JCPenney has filed a lawsuit to block the accusations. Its rebuttal complaint states that it has been exposed to “to imminent, irreparable harm,” and that the company at risk of demands for payment on upwards of $2.8 billion.
"I don't think there's any truth to [the claims]," concluded Johnson. "We don't believe there is. We have to let this play out."
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