JC Penny (JCP) is looking to bounce back from a not-so-stellar JCP stock year, and one move it’s making is opening on Thanksgiving evening to capitalize on early Black Friday shopping.
The retailer hopes the move puts it ahead during the critical holiday shopping period.
JCP stock — down 62% year-to-date — has had a rough and tumble past few months, as rumors about a possible bankruptcy caused its shares to fall and fall hard.
As InvestorPlace reported yesterday, “from the start of the year to mid-September, JCPenney stock slid more than 30%. Any investors who thought the worst was over at that point and went bottom fishing for JCP were swiftly punished, too. In the past month alone, JCP stock has lost more than 45% of its value — including yesterday’s small pop.”
Which brings us to why JC Penny is smartly moving to capitalize on early holiday shopping.
The Plano, Texas-based chain will be opening most of its 1,100 stores at 8 p.m., the same as rival Macy’s (M). The Thanksgiving evening opening is much earlier than last year, when Penney didn’t open until 6 a.m. Friday. That made the retailer one of the laggards for the unofficial kickoff to the season.
J.C. Penney is also bringing back a tradition it ditched last year: it will give away nearly 2 million holiday snow globes starting at 4 a.m. on the Friday after the turkey feast.
“Obviously, we were one of the last to open [last year],” Tony Bartlett, Penney’s executive vice president of stores, told the news wire. But he noted this year, “We’re all in.”
In the mind of JC Penny execs, they better be. Sales at JCP fell 25% last year and are slated to fall another 7% this year.
The holiday shopping season is paramount to staving off another bad year — and keeping JCP stock from having a very unhappy holiday.