JCPenney not planning to replace president for now

Retail Editor 2, June 20, 2012

Plano, Texas - Two days after the surprising departure of JCPenney president Michael Francis, ceo Ron Johnson told Women's Wear Daily he plans to direct the marketing operation himself for the time being. He also offered an explanation for Francis' departure after a tenure of just under eight months.
"My job as ceo is to really take responsibility for everything. I felt compelled to dive in and help with the new strategy. Michael and I both concluded we didn't need two hands on the same steering wheel. The marketing I largely left to him. The fact that it hasn't resonated [meant] I had to get involved," he told WWD.
The decision to part ways was mutual, he said.
After first quarter sales fell 21%, Johnson told analysts last month the company needed to refine its marketing message. The retailer immediately pivoted from emphasizing the everyday pricing strategy it introduced Feb. 1 to focus on its month-long item discounts as well as its "best price" clearance items to drive traffic.
Johnson told the Wall Street Journal yesterday the second quarter was looking better, although Father's Day sales missed the mark.
JCP is scheduled to report its second quarter results Aug. 8.


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