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Penney's CEO Johnson fired
April 9th, 2013
PLANO, Texas – J.C. Penney Co. has dismissed chief executive officer Ron Johnson and appointed his predecessor, Myron Ullman, as his replacement.
The move by Penney’s board of directors followed by about five weeks the company’s report of catastrophic results for fiscal 2012. The department store chain’s top line plunged 24.8% to $12.99 billion while its net loss ballooned to $985 million from red ink totaling $152 million in fiscal 2011. Comparable-store sales for the year plummeted 25.2%, as customer traffic fell 13%.
Johnson’s firing brought to an end a tumultuous 17-month tenure that saw the CEO attempt unsuccessfully to wean Penney’s shoppers from the sales and promotions to which they were accustomed in favor of an everyday-low price (EDLP) strategy.
The return of Ullman to the helm was greeted with clear disappointment by Wall Street, with some analysts suggesting that shareholders should vote out the current board members at the next annual meeting.