Retailer J.C. Penney Company will close 130 to 140 stores over the next few months and plans to announce their locations in mid-March.
Penney has 11 stores in South Florida including five in Miami-Dade County, four in Broward County and two in Palm Beach County, according to the company’s website.
The retailer also will close a distribution center in Lakeland and consolidate its operations at a distribution center in Atlanta.
Penney also announced Friday that almost all of the affected stores will close in the second quarter.
The stores Penny plans to close represent 13 to 14 percent of all of its stores and account for less than 5 percent of the company’s total annual sales.
“We believe that closing stores will … allow us to adjust our business to compete effectively against the growing threat of online retailers,” Marvin R. Ellison, chairman and chief executive officer of Penney, said in a prepared statement. “Maintaining a large store base gives us a competitive advantage in the evolving retail landscape.”
Penney expects to record an pre-tax charge of about $225 million in connection with the store closings, mainly because of lease-termination expenses.