USA TODAY International Edition - - MONEY -

J. C. Penney plans to open "toy shops" within its de­part­ment stores in an ef­fort to re­cap­ture the magic from the days when it ex­cited kids and par­ents with toys in its hol­i­day cat­a­logs. Seek­ing its foot­ing amid rick­ety times for phys­i­cal re­tail, the de­part­ment- store chain is hop­ing to cap­i­tal­ize on a suc­cess­ful de­ci­sion to re­vive toy sales dur­ing the 2016 hol­i­day sea­son for the first time in years. J. C. Penney will add the toy shops per­ma­nently in all of its stores, num­ber­ing more than 1,000 lo­ca­tions. The re­tailer had al­ready added toys in 100 stores and had plans to ex­pand its as­sort­ment for back- to- school shop­ping. But the com­pa­ny­wide roll­out re­flects an ag­gres­sive pivot for a re­tailer seek­ing to demon­strate its rel­e­vance amid the surg­ing pres­ence of Ama­zon. com and nim­bler phys­i­cal com­peti­tors. . "We know that shop­pers buy toys year- round and by cre­at­ing a fun, invit­ing toy shop, with some of the big­gest brands and hottest prod­ucts, we will en­tice fam­i­lies to shop and spend more at J. C. Penney," said John Tighe, ex­ec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent and chief mer­chant, in a state­ment. "Toys are an ex­cit­ing prod­uct cat­e­gory for JCPen­ney and an in­store at­trac­tion that will drive traf­fic and sales as we con­tinue to fo­cus on in­creas­ing rev­enue per cus­tomer."

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