Retailer JCPenney has announced that it will close two distribution facilities and between 130-140 stores over the next few months.
The closures are part of the company's plan to "optimize its national retail operations as part of the Company's successful return to profitability," according to a release from J.C. Penney.
"In 2016, we achieved our $1 billion EBITDA target and delivered a net profit for the first time since 2010; however, we believe we must take aggressive action to better align our retail operations for sustainable growth," said Marvin R. Ellison, chairman and chief executive officer of JCPenney. "We understand that closing stores will impact the lives of many hard working associates, which is why we have decided to initiate a voluntary early retirement program for approximately 6,000 eligible associates."
The company plans to release a full list of planned closures in mid-March pending notification of all affected personnel. Nearly all impacted stores are expected to close in the second quarter of 2017.
There are two local JCPenney stores; one in the Monmouth Mall in Eatontown and another in the Freehold Raceway Mall.