Shares of JCPenney (NYSE:JCP) surged more than 5% in Friday morning trading after documents filed with federal regulators revealed that the struggling retail chain had attracted the interest of a prominent investor.
Soros Fund Management, headed by billionaire investor and activist George Soros, said it had acquired a passive 7.9% stake in JCPenney. The size of the stake makes Soros the fourth largest stakeholder in the retail chain, Bloomberg noted
JCPenney has seen its sales plunge over the last year after former CEO Ron Johnson decided to banish periodic store sales in favor of every day low prices. The move bombed with shoppers, who abandoned JC Penney in droves.
After posting massive losses in recent quarters, the company has resumed promoting sales and discounts. Earlier this month, the board fired Johnson, a former Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) executive who had been recruited to turnaround the chain’s performance in late 2011.