J.C. Penney to permanently close about 242 stores as part of bankruptcy plan

Stores staying open accounted for 82% of the company's fiscal 2019 sales

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(Reuters) - J.C. Penney Co Inc plans to trim its store count by 29% to about 604, as the U.S. department store chain looks to focus on those more profitable, a regulatory filing showed on Monday, two days after it filed for bankruptcy protection.

The stores to stay open accounted for 82% of the company's fiscal 2019 sales, J.C. Penney said. Reuters on Friday reported that the company was planning to shutter roughly 200 stores.

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J.C. Penney, which is looking to cut costs to remain afloat, plans to reorganize and emerge from bankruptcy proceedings after eliminating several billion dollars of debt. It will also explore a sale as part of the terms of its $900 million of debtor-in-possession financing.

BANKRUPTCY COURT MAKES BIG DECISION AFFECTING J.C. PENNEY STAFF

Meanwhile, the company is doubling down on its e-commerce presence as consumers are increasingly shopping online and hopes to record double-digit growth in its flagship online channel by fiscal 2021.

A customer pushes a shopping cart inside a J.C. Penney Co. store in Peoria, Illinois, May 12, 2018. (Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The company operates about 850 stores in the United States and Puerto Rico, according to its website.

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(Reporting by Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)

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